The Meridian Global Foundation was founded in 2005 by four Perth-based business people who were looking to give back to their community in a sustainable and tangible way.
As they talked with others in their networks they realized that many other people felt the same way. The founders saw the perfect opportunity to harness the passion, talents and generosity of like-minded people to have an impact that went beyond just a financial donation.
Meridian’s purpose was to inspire philanthropy and made it their mission to be the premier global support group for young professionals and business people seeking to develop their leadership and philanthropic spirit. Meridian was founded on three key concepts:
Connect Connecting a diverse range of passionate and motivated people through regular member events and projects.
Challenge Causing growth in our members and communities.
Contribute Making a difference through Meridian supported projects that were sustainable, ethical, empowering, innovative and inspiring.
Initially Meridian ran a series of networking events including sundowners, golf days and quiz nights… all with the common purpose to facilitate a conversation with philanthropy amongst its supporters. (the events were also known for great food!). Meridian also aimed to showcase philanthropy with its Meet the Philanthropist series which over the years has hosted the likes of David Flanagan, Cath Sutherland, John Poynton, Frank Surgener, Dale Alcock, Michael Malone and more recently Annie Fogarty and Charlie Bass.
These events enabled Meridian to make its first donation through Opportunity International, setting up a $10,000 ‘Trust bank’ in West Timor which provided micro finance for people to start their own business to break the poverty cycle. Since this time Meridian has given away over $250,000 to 18 charities plus through its supporters contributed time, pro bono skills and connections.
In 2014, Meridian evolved its model to that of a giving circle and investment fund that enables its supporters to pool their resources and donate to high impact charities.