Our May Awesome Newcastle took place last Thursday night at the heavenly Wine Selectors Headquarters in Honeysuckle. All gathered in the private tasting room with a wine in one hand, nibbles in the other and a keen interest to hear all the great things planned for Newcastle. Our awesome board member Lois Donaldson from Wine Selectors put on a beautiful spread for everyone, and was certainly the hostess with the most-est!
Awesome Newcastle provides $1,000 grants every month to help community projects in Newcastle, Australia. The finalists pitching for the grant were Andrew Finnie & Wendy Peacock from Newcastle Community Art Centre, Daniel Moffatt-Martin from To The Edge High Performance Centre and Kate Fitz presenting the Friendship Bench for Newcastle East Public School.
Accompanying the board were four awesome guest board members Anne Long CEO of Greater Charitable Foundation, Bec Bowie owner of local favourite cafe Estabar, Executive Officer at NIB Foundation, Amy Tribe and Ryan MacPherson from Futura Group.
First to present were Wendy Peacock and Andrew Finnie who presented ‘Artists and Artisans’, a one-off not-for-profit publication showcasing Newcastle based artists. By selling the fine art book, they are hoping to raise funds to keep the Newcastle Community Art Centre running. After Peacock and Finnie’s presentation, our board members had a great Q&A session with the finalists and discussed ideas to help their cause and further expand the book’s possibilities.
Next up was the very passionate Daniel Moffatt-Martin from To The Edge High Performance Centre. Moffatt-Martin shared his dream of building his high performance center to host world-class athletes allowing them to train right here in Newcastle. With incredible exports, Moffatt-Martin believes having a performance centre like this could not only help develop local athletes but also attract international ones. The grant would go towards Moffatt-Martin’s coaching development as he works through international internships, his masters and eventually his PhD.
With children at heart of her cause, Kate Fitz shared her dreams of a Friendship Bench at Newcastle East Public School. Fitz began by sharing a story of her daughter’s struggle to make friends at school and highlighted loneliness as a difficult emotion for kids to express. The bench, built by Newcastle Men’s Shed, would be a safe place for children to reach out and assist with play together. The money would go towards the materials for the bench, as well as a co-operative play area to accompany it.
Finalists were led out of the tasting room while the board discussed who would be the lucky winner. As they deliberated next door, our finalists congratulated each other and shared their love of the great projects and developments in Newcastle.
Guest board member and Estabar owner, Bec Bowie congratulated all the finalists on their awesome ideas. She suggested finalists talk to the board and soak up all their ideas on how they could take their projects to the next level. Following this advice, Bowie announced the May winner by handing over the cash to Moffatt-Martin from To The Edge High Performance Centre.
We’re looking forward to seeing which world champion athlete Moffatt-Martin claims as his own!
If you’d like to apply for an Awesome Newcastle grant, head to awesomefoundation.org