Employee volunteering

Vicinity’s volunteering program provides the opportunity for our people to offer valuable assistance to those in need.

We actively encourage our people to participate in skilled volunteering, a key initiative of our partnership with Beacon Foundation, and which connects employees with local secondary school students, often from schools located within disadvantaged areas, to provide students with industry insights and the opportunity to learn about different career possibilities.

During FY19 and FY20, over 60 Vicinity employees volunteered with Beacon Foundation’s High Impact Work Readiness programs, which included a series of intensive one-day workshops aimed at providing valuable employability and life skills to young people from participating schools. During the program, mentors from Vicinity shared their skills and experience with students, providing them with an opportunity to learn more about the retail sector and practice newly acquired skills in a real-world setting.

The volunteering program is also linked to Vicinity’s learning and development framework, giving our people the opportunity to build mentoring and leadership skills to succeed in the workplace, while helping to tackle youth disengagement and unemployment in local communities.

Work experience program

In FY18, we expanded our community programs and introduced a new work experience program, open to all students including those involved in Beacon Foundation programs. The program provides a consistent framework through which to engage the short-term placement of students from secondary schools participating in Beacon’s programs, as well as students from other schools, at Vicinity’s corporate offices or centres to learn more about our workplace and industry.

Throughout FY20, we continued to build this program with 9 student placements across our centres and in our National Head Office.

The program aims to provide students with a more engaging and memorable encounter with the workforce than traditional work experience programs, and is structured to respond to students interest areas as well as offering exposure to a wide range of roles and career paths.

Every work experience student is allocated a Vicinity employee mentor for the duration of their placement. The mentor shares their experiences and insights with the student and guides them through a structured program to provide a meaningful and enriching experience. Coaching and mentoring of young people through this program further enables our people to develop leadership skills and meet their learning and development goals.

The program additionally promotes interest in a property industry careers more broadly and aims to foster positive relationships between our centres and youth in our communities.

Workplace giving

Vicinity has in place a workplace giving program to make it easy for our people to donate to charitable causes that are important to them.

The program is delivered through an easy to use online platform, giving our people access to over 1,800 charities across Australia.  Vicinity matches donations made, dollar for dollar, up to an annual matching cap for each team member, to all charities supported by our people.

The program also provides our corporate and centre offices an effective avenue through which to run fundraisers of their choice during the year, and offers an easy way for employees to contribute to these campaigns.

In the days following the Australian bushfire emergency in late December 2019/early January 2020, a bushfire appeal was set up via our workplace giving platform to enable employees to make donations to charities supporting the bushfire relief effort. Vicinity removed our annual employer matching cap during the crisis, committing to match all employee donations to the cause, including those made outside of our workplace giving platform. More than $48,000 in donations were made by Vicinity employees to various charities as part of this campaign, and matched by Vicinity.

For more information on our bushfire response, read our case study here.