Connecting your Australian community group with a developing community overseas is a simple, effective and sustainable way to tackle global poverty. Palms’ community connections initiative connects Australian and overseas communities. It’s an opportunity for those who are unable to volunteer to make a sustainable contribution, create lasting friendships, and strengthen their local community, without having to leave home.

A Community partnership involves providing the financial support required to place a skilled volunteer in a placement for two years. A contribution of $14,281 enables a volunteer to provide approximately $150,000 worth of support to the community they’re working in. After the volunteer placement, your community partnership will continue to serve the overseas community for years to come. Your community will have given the time and expertise that is essential to making lasting change. By exchanging skills and building capacity, Palms Australia volunteers reduce the community’s dependence on future aid.

Your Australian community provides:

  • Financial support to help recruit, prepare, and support the volunteer: The overseas community cannot afford to cover the costs of getting a qualified volunteer to work in their community. The funds raised by Australian partner communities help cover these costs.
  • Support for the community during the volunteer placement: Knowing you support their initiative demonstrates to a remote community that there are organisations who trust them to be independent instigators of their own future.
  • Solidarity with a volunteer: Working in a new culture is not easy. Often a volunteer can feel lost and alone in their new setting. Knowing that communities in Australia support what they are doing can make these challenges easier to overcome. Your partnership also gives the volunteer the opportunity to discuss their experiences when they return.
  • An opportunity to achieve true sustainable development: A major part of Palms Australia volunteers’ mission is to transfer their skills to local staff. This reduces dependence and maintains the dignity and agency of the overseas community.

Your Australian community receives:

  • Exclusive updates on the volunteer’s progress: The volunteer in your partner community will send regular updates on their work, life, successes and trials. The community in which they work will also send updates, giving you first hand accounts of the development project. This helps your community learn about  life in another culture and the way development should work.
  • A meeting or event with the volunteer: Host an event with your community to meet the volunteer and share insights on working in remote communities and business opportunities in the country of their placement;
  • Recognition on Palms.org.au: We will personally thank your organisation in your partner community’s project page on palms.org.au;
  • The satisfaction of being part of a peaceful global mission: Palms Australia’s global mission is a peaceful alternative to the often invasive approaches taken by governments and other organisations. Working relationships are developed, the dignity of all parties is respected and a greater cross-cultural understanding is achieved. Your community can help us continue this.

Just as we support communities abroad, Palms is here to support your community in your partnership. We can offer fundraising materials and give advice on best engaging your members. We can also send a representative to speak with your community about Palms and the work we do overseas.

Your community group might:

  • Run fundraising activities such as trivia nights, movie nights, market stalls, fetes, fun-runs, concerts, raffles, or come up with your own unique ways to have fun while making a difference.
  • Meet to discuss issues of justice, equity, conflict and peace and appropriate ways of approaching them.
  • Join an Encounter to visit the project you are supporting and see the volunteer in action.

Community partnerships provide a unique opportunity for Australian communities to open their hands to the world. To view the communities currently seeking Australian support, please visit our Projects page. To register your community or to find out more, complete the enquiry form or call Robert on (02) 9560 5333.