Featured artist: Shannon Crees

Community and social sustainability

Featured artist: Shannon Crees
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Community and social sustainability

Community iconOver 85% of target businesses donate time and money to community organisations.

  • Supporting the Marrickville community
  • Ensuring their money and time is being well spent
  • Meeting their social responsibility targets
  • Increasing brand recognition
  • Increasing staff morale
  • Benefiting from the business promotional opportunity
  • Creating new market opportunities
  • Gaining new knowledge for themselves and their staff
  • Improving customer loyalty as customers value spending their money with a company with a social conscience

When most people think of sustainability, they think of the environment but sustainability is all about finding a balance between society, economy and the environment whilst ensuring we leave the planet in better condition than we found. Also, supporting economic development and a vibrant local community. The target sustainability business program is inviting all members and friends of the program to make a commitment to social as well as economic and environmental sustainability.

What is Social Sustainability?

Social sustainability is a continually evolving concept, but can be described as:

occurring when the formal and informal actively support the capacity of current and future generations to create healthy and liveable communities. Socially sustainable communities are equitable, diverse, democratic and provide a good quality of life
(WACOSS, 2002).

How do we get involved?

Earth Kids vegetable gardenPartnerships between business and community are a great way to share resources and tap in to thriving networks which help to build a more resilient and sustainable community. Working with a small number of community organisations, the target team is assisting our business members to create partnerships with community groups that will have tangible benefits to our community.

Every day the target team works with inspiring businesses, keen to get involved in their community but not knowing where to start. The Community Sustainability Social Partnership Catalogue helps to address this common barrier, bringing great community causes to your doorstep. This unique aspect of the target program addresses broader sustainability goals - beyond the core focus of environmental sustainability.

Current community initiatives and organisations in the catalogue include:

  • Midnight Basketball Marrickville
  • Multi Mix Mob Playgroup
  • Community Gardens, Marrickville
  • Biodiversity Improvement Project
  • The Kianh Foundation
  • Earth Kids Gardening Club

Click here to view a full list of the Community Sustainability Partnerships

Earth Kids Vegetable Garden

Once your business has found a suitable partner organisation, we recommend you meet to find out about how they operate, where their needs are, and then co-sign the record of agreement.

Alternatively, if you have a specific cause that is not included, there are a great many other vital community organisations in the Marrickville area needing support. Please see table below or visit the Marrickville Council Community Directory and Our Community website for more information and resources.

OrganisationWebsitePhone Number
Marrickville Legal Centre Marrickville Legal Centre (02) 9559 2899
Marrickville Youth Resource Centre Marrickville Youth Resource Centre (02) 9564 3222
Australians for Native Title Reconciliation (ANTAR) Inc ANTaR - Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation (02) 9564 0594
Metro Migrant Resource Centre Metro Migrant Resource Centre (02) 9725 3773
NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights lobby Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby (02) 9571 5501
Australian Foundation For Disability AFFORD - the Australian Foundation for Disability 1300 233 673
BCS Crystal Street Community Shop Baptist Community Services (02) 9572 9836
Grow NSW GROW Australia (02) 6295 7791
Rosemount Good Shepherd Rosemount Good Shepherd (02) 8571 7800
The Bower Cooperative The Bower Cooperative (02) 9568 6280
Sunnyfield Independence Sunnyfield (02) 8977 8888

What else can our businesses do?

  • Dance Around the World festivalSupport local creativity by facilitating the sale of local artwork and employing local musicians
  • Promote universal access to allow people with a disability and those with prams to shop and access services.
  • Support local and international charities by donating portions of profits and tips
  • Share storage or meeting space with local community groups to drive down cost.
  • Invite staff to volunteer and support a local organisation for a day e.g. a graphic designer helps with rebranding or an accountant helps out a charity at end of financial year.
  • Be a collection point for food and toys or for fundraiser events.
  • Become a mentor - share your expertise and skills e.g. media, administration and finance.
  • Improve your resource efficiency and pass resources on rather than throwing them away. When functioning computers and office furniture get upgraded, distribute the equipment to where it may be needed - a school or community organisation.
  • Have you over-ordered or has your product reached the best before date? Team up with your community organisation of choice and sell at a reduced rate as a fundraiser or become a donor to Foodbank NSW or OzHarvest.
  • Become access aware to ensure you aren't missing lost business from your local community.
  • Use your power and influence!

Ways your business can contribute

  • donation (one-off/ongoing/project based)
  • provision of volunteer staff
  • pro bono services
  • in-kind support
  • sponsorship
  • provision of gifts
  • payroll deductions matched with employers matching the donation

Links to advice and support to help your business become more socially responsible

The following organisations and programs help businesses to build their Corporate Social Responsibility.

St James Ethics Centre - Hub for Ethical Business Resource to help small to medium sized businesses improve responsible business practice
Good Company Register of volunteers skills & time to be matched with community group projects
Global Reporting Initiative International Sustainability Reporting Framework
Good Business Register Register of businesses working towards operating a sustainable business. The five principles of responsible business practice are financial, workplace, supply chain stakeholder and community and environment.
Our Community Provides advice, tools and training for community groups & schools and practical linkages between community groups, the public, business & government.
Hand It On! StreetSmart Australia was established in 2003 to support and strengthen smaller, grassroots community organisations helping the homeless. Hand It On is aimed at members of the Food industry to fundraise alongside their patrons.
United Way United Way play a leadership role in corporate community involvement programs to improve philanthropy in Australia.

Celebrate your partnership

We encourage you to tell us your stories of what you are doing to contribute towards a more socially sustainable Marrickville, email sustainability@marrickville.nsw.gov.au