Pitching in for Geelong’s youth

Pitch Up Geelong is the Give Where You Live Foundation’s first ‘live’ fundraising event in 12 months – and what greater reason is there to get back together than helping young vulnerable students re-engaging with their education and their community, in the wake of the remote learning experience that has left so many vulnerable students even more so.

 The Foundation invites Geelong to come along to Pitch Up Geelong on Thursday, 18 March at 6pm either at the Geelong Arts Centre or via Zoom.  Pitch Up Geelong is a unique live crowdfunding experience that will connect donors with the heart and soul of 3 locally operating organisations; EdConnect Australia, Geelong Youth Engagement and Strong Brother Strong Sister.


Pitch Up Geelong is a little like Shark Tank, a little like a TEDx talk.  Each of our organisations will have 6 minutes to impart the often heart-wrenching stories of challenges facing young people and the life-changing work they are undertaking across our region to make a change to these young lives.

Foundation CEO Bill Mithen will then take the floor and invite the donations to flow, inviting guests to be a part of real change.

Best of all every dollar donated on the night will have double the impact as they will be generously matched by Matched Funding Partners Gforce Employment Solutions, the Erdi Foundation (Novotel Geelong) and the Anthony Costa Foundation.  It is anticipated that each organisation walks away with in excess of $25,000 each to help with their life-changing work.

The three Pitching Organisations

EdConnect Australia   trains, supports, and places volunteers in schools across our local region to improve the lives of vulnerable students.

Danie McNeil will pitch to seek funds to introduce specialist mentors to walk alongside students in the Geelong and Surf Coast region as they prepare to transition from grade 6 to year 7. Many of these students have been left extremely vulnerable in the wake of the Covid remote learning experience.

Danie has worked in senior management roles within the ‘For Purpose’ sector for the past 15 years and is passionate about making a difference and focusing on the ‘why’ of the organisation. Danie strongly believes that through sharing stories, highlighting the wins, explaining the challenges, there is greater understanding, compassion and willingness to stand up and make a difference.

Geelong Youth Engagement (GYE) runs multiple youth focused programs for ‘at-risk youth’ across our region.

Former participant Ashley Hall will be pitching for funds for the Geelong Kokoda Youth Program supporting re-engaging young people from local State Secondary Schools with their education, their families, and the wider community as they work through the challenges they are facing in their lives.

Ashley was a participant of the Program in 2015 as a Year 10 Matthew Flinders student. During her time on the program Ashley showed great strength and growth and with the help of the mentors and other program peers Ashley was able to successfully trek the 96km Kokoda Trek and overcome many obstacles that were ahead of her. Since graduating Year 12, Ashley went on to study a Diploma in Community Services and is now working in the wellbeing team at Northern Bay College. Ashley was welcomed back to the Program as a mentor.

Strong Brother Strong Sister is a culturally appropriate safe place for Aboriginal young people to access and thrive. Offering mentoring programs and youth groups, here in Geelong, the structure and programs guide, mentor, and empower Aboriginal young people to achieve excellence.

Keeden Graham will be pitching for funds to strengthen existing youth groups for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people (12-25 years) across our region.

Keeden is a proud Yorta-Yorta, Wiradjuri, and Dja Dja Wurrung man.  He works full-time as an Indigenous manager/mentor for Strong Brother Strong Sister and is an active board member of the Ngarrimili Charity (offering programs and support for current and aspiring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses across Victoria).  Keeden is a member of the Victorian Youth Congress working closely with the Minister for Youth and is a council member of the Youth Council at the Commission for Children and Young People. Keeden recently became a contributor to VicHealth’s youth expert panel and is studying a Diploma of Counselling.

Attending Pitch Up Geelong

The Foundation invites you to attend Pitch Up Geelong at the Geelong Arts Centre, due to covid restrictions, registrations are essential.  You can also join in virtually from the comfort of your own home via zoom and again registrations are essential.

To register to attend Pitch Up Geelong in person at the Geelong Arts Centre please click here or phone the Foundation on 5229 4364.

To join  in virtually via Zoom please log in from 6pm via the link here https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87462204887


If you would like to support the Pitch Up Geelong organisations but are unable to attend, please proxy down load the Proxy Donation pack here Virtual Proxy Pledge Form .