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Hawthorn Community Chest (HCC) is a network of residents and business people who live and work within the local government area of Boroondara. We recognise there are people in our community who may be struggling financially, and we work to help these local people through our grants programs. HCC has been operating since 1958 and is an independent, registered charity. We are a  volunteer committee, supported by a part-time office manager and we work with and through the established care providers and charities to support local people.

Originally we operated exclusively in Hawthorn, but now work across Boroondara. At its core, HCC is both a grant-maker - providing funding to people who are in necessitous circumstances, and a fund-raiser - holding events and activities and sourcing donations to fund our grants.

How does HCC operate?

HCC generally works through care providers and charities that approach us for grants on behalf of their clients. These agencies may include, but are not limited to Camcare, Boroondara Community Outreach, Women's Liberation Halfway House, Servants Community Housing and St Vincent de Paul.

The grants pay for a whole range of things that will make a difference to the lives of those in need. It may be a winter coat for a rough sleeper, or a new mattress for someone living with chronic pain, or the grant may pay off utility bills that have mounted up or help with non-PBS medications. We have paid for car repairs, and car registrations, and schoolbooks and school uniforms - if having something that simply can't be afforded makes a life-changing difference, then HCC will consider a grant to pay for it.

When HCC was established, the founding Committee had the foresight to set up an investment portfolio, and the proceeds of this fund cover all our administration costs. We have a paid, part-time office manager, and our office space has been very kindly provided by a local supporting business, so our costs are kept to a minimum. 

HCC pays for its grants through fundraising. Over the years the HCC team has held sausage sizzles, trivia nights, band nights and a gala ball. We also have a group of wonderful friends who make regular donations.


As HCC has Deductible Gift Recipient status - which means it is recognized by the Australian Tax Office as a charity - it is very lucky to be able to give 100 percent of net fundraising income away as grants. This means that all donations made that are greater than $2.00 are fully tax deductible.

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