Walking in a positive direction

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Who we are

Minderoo Foundation is a modern philanthropic organisation.

We take on tough, persistent issues with the potential to drive massive change.

We incubate ideas and accelerate impact.

We push the limits of what is believed possible.

Minderoo is independent, forward thinking and seeks effective, scalable solutions. We are proudly Australian, and one of Asia’s largest philanthropies, with AUD $1.5 billion committed to a range of global initiatives. Our team comprises over 75 employees across seven locations.

We aim to provide a new or unique perspective on seemingly intractable challenges.

How we work

Most of our projects begin with a sense of curiosity – is there a better way?

Through a collaborative, evidence-based approach we strive to solve major global challenges through our seven key initiatives.

We both support and fund early-stage innovation, develop major programs on the ground in communities, and advocate for change at domestic and international policy forums.

Everything we do is driven by a deep care for people and a mission to improve the world for future generations.

We aim to empower both our employees and others to have a positive impact through inclusion, collaboration and, most importantly, kindness. The world needs more of it.

Key initiatives

Perth Symphony Orchestra
Building CommunityWe work with big-thinking partners to identify projects that will benefit arts, culture and community, both in Australia and internationally. Since Minderoo was established, we’ve supported over 280 partners, and counting, across a variety of causes.Building Community Overview
Cancer research lab
Eliminate CancerWhy can’t we live in a world where cancer is a treatable, non-fatal disease? We believe that through leadership, influence and resources, we can help catalyse a global movement of collaboration to accelerate cancer research and improve prevention, detection, and treatment.Eliminate Cancer Overview
Steve BurnellChief Executive Officer, Eliminate Cancer
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Uriel Soberanes
Flourishing OceansThe ocean is the largest ecosystem on Earth. It provides the primary source of protein for over one billion people, contains some of the most diverse lifeforms on the planet and is of critical significance from recreational, business and environmental perspectives. As a global community, we must do a better job of helping it regain a flourishing state.Flourishing Oceans Overview
Connect the future, Shanghai, China
Frontier TechnologyWe are motivated by a vision of technology that earns society’s collective ‘yes’ because it empowers people – rather than being dehumanising and unaccountable.Frontier Technology Overview
Julia PowlesChief Executive Officer, Frontier Technology
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Indigenous Australian Aboriginal grandmother
Generation OneGeneration One’s mission is to end the disparity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in our generation. Informed by the recommendations of the Creating Parity Report, our focus is firmly on reforming specific policies and creating sustainable training and employment opportunities.Generation One Overview
Shelley CableChief Executive Officer, Generation One
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Research Lab
ResearchResearch underpins and informs everything we do – they are part of the Minderoo Foundation DNA. Our R&I team helps to develop new research on critical areas of impact that are important to Minderoo’s seven core initiatives, as well as leveraging the knowledge platforms developed by each.Research Overview
Fiona DavidResearch Chair
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Thrive By FiveDid you know that 90 per cent of brain growth occurs by the age of three years? Our education, health and social policy decisions must reflect this. Our Thrive By Five initiative believes a long-term, evidence-based strategy to create a culture that prioritises children will ensure that all Australian kids have the best start to life.Thrive By Five Overview
Steve CliffordChief Executive Officer, Thrive by Five
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Walk FreeWalk Free is a global organisation with a mission to end modern slavery in our generation by mobilising a global activist movement, generating the highest quality research, enlisting business, and raising unprecedented levels of capital to drive change in those countries and industries bearing the greatest responsibility for modern slavery today.Walk Free Overview
Jenn MorrisChief Executive Officer, Walk Free
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Our approach

Early Stage

We start with the challenge “it can’t be done”. We are willing to work outside the system to back unconventional solutions. We devote research teams, pilot programs and data to tough issues.

On the Ground

By identifying the connections between issues, we create new models to push the limits of what is believed possible. We engage people at a local level to co-create solutions.

Policy

We get the right people in the room and share our proven models between philanthropists, faith, business and government leaders to develop policies for long term change.

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operations

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Operations comprises Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, Legal and Compliance. We are responsible for the administration of best practice processes across all our global initiatives to ensure the Minderoo Foundation runs as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Communications

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Minderoo Foundation’s communication division helps to drive change through dialogues, forums, media, government relations, and public campaigns.

Investments

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We believe program-related investments can stimulate private sector innovation, encourage market-driven efficiencies and attract external capital to philanthropic causes. Our Investments division weighs up returns and social impact to drive positive change.

Annual Reports

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We are prepared to lose, to come second,
to fail, in order to explore what systematic change looks like. 

Andrew Forrest, The Australian Financial Review Magazine, May 2018

Our history

Andrew and Nicola Forrest founded Minderoo Foundation in 2001, and continue to drive its philanthropic mission today. Andrew remains Chairman of Fortescue Metals Group, the publicly listed company he founded in 2003, which is one of the world’s main suppliers of iron ore. Dividends from Fortescue fund Minderoo’s ongoing commitment to philanthropy. We take our name from Minderoo Station, the family homestead where Andrew grew up in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. It has been a part of the Forrest family since 1878. Minderoo is an Aboriginal word meaning permanent and clean water.

Our founders, Andrew and Nicola Forrest, pictured with one of the foundation’s newest members ‘Bobbie’ — the Bright Tomorrows Start Today campaign mascot. 

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Our team

With over 90 staff in six international offices, we have the capacity to mobilise expert teams for local and global projects. At Minderoo we are committed to hiring the best and brightest, those with the passion and commitment to tackle the big challenges.

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Claire Raphael
Research Analyst
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Fiona David
Research Chair
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Amila Ratnayake
IT Support Analyst
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Luca Giacovazzi
Investment Analyst
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Charlotte Ollis
Project Analyst
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Nikki De Campe
Research Analyst
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Sarah Hellings
Partnerships & Compliance Manager
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Vismay Benegal
Project Engineer
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Christin Gillespie
Receptionist
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Vyv Summers
Research Analyst

Funding philanthropy
sustainably

Change can take time, at Minderoo we always think big and plan for the long-term. Our philanthropy is supported by Minderoo Group and its portfolio of businesses. This integrated model ensures a level of unparalleled sustainability for our philanthropic activities.

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For any commercial enquiries please contact commercial@minderoo.com.au