Case study: BikeRescue program at Rockingham

BikeRescue program at Rockingham Centre

Between June to July 2017, our centre at Rockingham partnered with Headspace and Dismantle to run a 10-week award winning program called BikeRescue.

BikeRescue is an accredited program that uses bike repair/refurbishment as a vehicle for youth outreach, engagement and mentoring.

The project at the centre was funded through an internal grant provided to Rockingham to form local partnerships to tackle youth unemployment and disengagement in its community.

Every Wednesday afternoon, ten young apprentices stripped and rebuilt two recycled bikes each – one is restored and donated to charity, the other restored by the apprentices and ‘earned’ to keep.

Dismantle provided the coaches and tools and Rockingham provided the funds and space to run the program.

The dynamic workshop environment and kinaesthetic tasks provided a unique experience to the young workers, teachers and counsellors. With music pumping, tools clicking and wheels spinning, the atmosphere at the workshop was plenty of fun, while also teaching valuable life skills to the participants. 

Through our new association with Headspace and Dismantle, we can better engage with disadvantaged youth in our catchment and slowly increase their ownership of the centre.
Leanne Smith, Centre Manager Rockingham Centre

Case study: Creating Change

In May 2017, Vicinity’s Bayside Shopping Centre ran a community fundraising campaign named Creating Change to raise awareness of the prevalent issue of homelessness in the suburb of Frankston, Victoria.

Recognising our role at the heart of the community, the centre saw the opportunity to lead the conversation on homelessness and raise awareness and funds to assist locals experiencing homelessness.  

The campaign supported Community Support Frankston (CSF), a charity that works to address homelessness in Frankston. CSF has a number of programs supporting homeless youth – which aligns with Vicinity’s community investment program focus, as homelessness is a major barrier to gainful employment.

For three weeks in May 2017, the Creating Change campaign raised funds for CSF, for which the centre team called on the support of local schools, businesses, consumers, centre retailers and suppliers, as well as Vicinity employees.

A number of in-centre activations, such as the Creating Change Thought Pods, enabled the local community to listen to stories of locals experiencing homelessness and be part of the conversation. 

Centre retailers and suppliers supported the campaign in a number of ways. Hoyts Cinemas at Bayside dedicated a 170 seat cinema screening to the campaign, with all ticket sales donated to the cause.

 

Creating Change thought pods at Bayside Shopping Centre

The centre also hosted a fundraising luncheon at the McClelland Sculpture Park Gallery in Frankston bringing together influential local stakeholders, including the Frankston Mayor and local council. 

Through the combined generosity of our community of stakeholders the campaign raised over $28,500 for CSF, including a donation from Vicinity through our internal grants program.

Case study: Quiet room at Northland

Northland Shopping Centre hosts Australia’s first ever shopping centre Quiet Room, a sensory soothing space for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder [ASD]. 

Constructed in 2014 together with Amaze, and built entirely by local volunteers and businesses, the Quiet Room gives individuals with ASD and their carers a space to reduce anxiety and over-stimulation, with access to sensory soothing items.

This quiet room makes Northland more accessible and creates a positive shopping experience for our customers and centre staff affected by ASD

Approximately 170 individuals and organisations have registered to access the quiet room since it was first installed, with Northland regularly receiving positive feedback from its users and their carers.

Leveraging the Quiet Room, the centre also offers a number of community events to support the autism community, including Sensitive Santa, sensory-friendly movies and sensory shopping experiences.

Case study: Mystery Maze at Mandurah Forum

During the 2017 summer school holidays, Vicinity’s Mandurah Forum created a 250 sqm Mystery Maze.

Constructed within a vacant tenancy, the maze provided a truly immersive and engaging educational experience for local children.

Kids were puzzled and challenged as they worked their way through the various challenges and obstacles the maze set out before them. The interactive experience also included balloon twisting, colouring sheets and chalkboards. 

Over 9,000 kids participated in the activity, making it easy for local families and visitors to keep children entertained during their visits to the centre. 

Case study: Stakeholder engagement in waste management

At the foundation of our waste management and recycling program’s success is effective collaboration between our centre teams, retailers and our waste service providers.

This involves keeping our retailers, employees, waste and cleaning contractors informed about their centre’s recycling program and targets.

To drive continued success, Vicinity has developed an innovative recycling video to educate our centre level stakeholders about the correct disposal of waste and the recycling streams available at our centres.

The video was first launched in July 2016 at Emporium Melbourne and distributed to the centre's retailers via dock screens, our retailer portal and monthly retailer inspections. During the first month, the centre experienced an uplift in its recycling rates by 5%, particularly in key waste streams such as cardboard and organics.

The video has proven an effective alternative to deploying face to face engagement, and is now being rolled out across our entire portfolio.

Case study: Retail Excellence Commercial Academy

Vicinity Commercial Academy is a learning and development program offered to our centre teams to develop business acumen to support our retailers.

The program builds the capability of our team to understand the performance and commercial challenges of our retailers.

As a result of better equipping our people through this program, centre teams across our portfolio have engaged with over 2000 retailers since January 2017, to learn about their challenges and key drivers of success, taking a collaborative approach to implement solutions that make a positive commercial impact on the retailer, as well as our centres’ performance. 

The program aims to improve our retailers’ success, and in doing so, create a better experience for our consumers and deliver successful business outcomes for Vicinity.

Case study: #sheimagines

Vicinity held five #sheimagines events during 2017, featuring both Vicinity employees and inspirational women externally.

The first event featured our three female executives Simone Carroll, Carolyn Viney and Carolyn Reynolds and the second featured three female team members, all speaking about their personal and professional journeys, barriers and learnings.

The third event was held in conjunction with Business Chicks, where our team members were invited to share their learnings from the past #sheimagines events, and 18 were selected to attend a Business Chicks workshop Amy Cuddy, the world renowned expert on mastering body language and building presence. The fourth and fifth events featured Lauren Jackson, former Australian basketball player, and Natashia Radford, Australia’s first accredited female race judge, respectively.

Podcasts for all events were made available to our team members nationally as a part of Vicinity’s commitment to promote diversity and inclusion.