An intimate group of 30 local supporters joined SVA in Brisbane last night to officially welcome Mimi’s House, a program of Hope Services, as the first Queensland venture in SVA’s venture philanthropy portfolio.
Mimi’s House is an early intervention program that supports primary school aged children in the Moreton Bay area who are struggling to engage in learning due to economic and social disadvantage and/or emotional challenges, with a high proportion from Indigenous or Pacific Islander backgrounds.
By creating a safe, calm environment and a structured program of mentoring, Mimi’s House provides them with the skills and resilience they need to thrive and succeed in life.
Commenting on the partnership SVA Director Queensland Mark Herbertt said: ‘We are delighted to welcome Mimi’s House as the first Queensland venture in our venture philanthropy portfolio and look forward to working with them to bring about long-term positive benefits for vulnerable children that are disengaged from school and for the local community in the Moreton Bay area.’
The event provided an opportunity for supporters and friends of SVA to hear from Mimi’s House co-founder Grant Austin who explained how the service gives children hope, life aspirations and support to re-engage with school.
Attendees were shown a short video featuring interviews with Mimi’s House staff and parents, in which Austin says, ‘The house is like going to Grandma’s house. Caring staff and volunteers welcome the children and work through a daily program providing nurture, support and lots of encouragement.’
Speaking to guests at the evening event, Austin also shared how SVA’s support will enable Mimi’s House to enhance its impact in the community. ‘The partnership provides a fantastic opportunity for our team to assist the children and families of the Moreton Bay region in an even greater way. It will enable an instant increase in care from the beginning of 2017 and allows a strong foundation to be built for the future,’ he said.
Mimi’s House will use the funding to expand its services from three to five days per week; extend its family support offering to ensure the families also receive the necessary care; and develop the second year mentoring program, which ensures continuity of support for children post the Mimi’s House program.
Pending positive results, the ultimate aim is to replicate the Mimi’s House model throughout South East Queensland ‘so that children in every community can have the opportunity to access learning and gain the skills to thrive,’ said Austin.
SVA CEO Rob commented: ‘SVA is delighted to be working with Mimi’s House, a fantastic Queensland initiative that has already supported over 150 children since its inception in 2012. We are looking forward to working with the Moreton Bay community to tackle some of the serious social problems that exist.’