The Western Bulldogs Community Foundation works with the community for the community and delivers services to over 5,000 people across four streams annually:
Health & Wellbeing
Sporting clubs have a unique ability to achieve change in their communities. In line with this, the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation leverages the power of sport, in association with a range of health and community partners, to promote individuals to live happier and healthier lives. Our Health & Wellbeing stream aims to address some of the predominant health concerns through the development of facilitated health pathways, co-branded health networks and co-designed health and wellbeing programs. These health programs are extensive health promotion and behaviour change programs developed to leverage key entities from across the health, sport, education, corporate and government sectors. Our overall aim is to address worrying health standards among men and women living and working in Victoria’s west.
Programs include Men’s Health and Wellbeing program Sons of the West (SOTW) and Women’s Health and Wellbeing program Daughters of the West, these programs support men and women across Melbourne’s West to lead healthier lives.
Diversity & Social Inclusion
Our Social Inclusion & Diversity stream aims to build self-reliant and connected communities that participate in and contribute back to our diverse society.
For generations, Melbourne’s west has been the first place that hundreds of thousands of immigrants to Australia have called home. Our region has among Australia’s highest rates of overseas born and is the most culturally diverse area in state. People from more than 130 different nations have made their new home in Melbourne’s west. We also have a significant indigenous population in the Western suburbs as well as Western Victoria. We celebrate diversity as an integral part of a united and cohesive community and aim to engage with multicultural, indigenous and all abilities communities via innovative programs.
Our Ready SETTLE Go Program enables over 2,000 migrants and refugees each year to successfully integrate and contribute to our community. It aims to facilitate a self-reliant and connected community participating in and contributing to the Australian society. The program supports new Australians in accessing mainstream services through utilising the unifying power of recreational activities and sports as the conduit to introduce Australian culture and values whilst promoting personal wellbeing and social connectedness. The program offers a range of community focused health education, leadership, youth and employability programs in the light of meaningful partnerships and referral pathways with organisations and services in the West.
Youth Leadership & Development
Our Youth Leadership & Development programs provide young people with hands on opportunities to become engaged in a learning pathway and grow as social leaders. Dedicated to shaping our future leaders, these programs support young people go through a journey of self-awareness, social awareness and ultimately community impact. These programs annually support over 200 young people to draw on their resilience and energy to lead and solve the problems of their own community.
Established in 2013 Western Bulldogs Leadership Project (formerly Whitten project) is a dynamic youth leadership program delivered by the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation in partnership with local councils and other stakeholders. The free program is available to males and females in Year 9 or 10 who live in Victoria’s west. The intensive 6-month program offers practical and theory based activities designed to enhance participant’s capacities in; leadership, teamwork, communication, goal setting, support networks, resilience and community engagement. It uses the Western Bulldogs Football Club as a vehicle to inspire, educate and mentor leaders for social change Victoria’s West by providing nominated young people with an exciting range of life, civic and sport experiences in which to learn and develop from.
Our other youth leadership development programs include Camp Bulldog and Nallei-Jerring Koori Youth Leadership Project. In future, we have plans to pilot a Social Entrepreneurship Program and a Youth Employment Pathways Program for young people in the West- 14-16 Age Group.
We believe in, stand for, and work to promote community harmony. We work with the entire community to promote inclusiveness and equality for all, regardless of race, faith, gender or disability. We facilitate health and well-being events, family days, VFL carnivals, and CALDPlay Gala events as well as participating in other key community events in the west.
- Over 20 community Engagement Events a year
- Over 10,000 Total engagements annually
- Supporting AFL themed rounds such as Indigenous round, multicultural round and White Ribbon Games to address social issues
- Leveraging VFL/AFLW games to utilise VU Whitten Oval as a community hub for diverse and positive community interaction
- Over 50 volunteers contributing over 5000 volunteer hours each year
Applications are now open for several of our programs: