Next month UnitingCare agencies and Wesley Mission Victoria will begin operating under the name of Uniting, as they form a single organisation delivering the Church’s community services.
Share, which raises funds for the agencies, will also become part of Uniting’s fundraising team, and operate under that name.
Uniting CEO Paul Linossier said the new organisation represents a continuation and strengthening of the Uniting Church’s mission to serve the community.
“Uniting represents a significant commitment by the Uniting Church to continue its ministry of compassion and care and to strengthen a prophetic call for justice in our time,” Mr Linossier said.
“It builds from the legacy of the founding agencies, synod’s early learning services and Share, and the partnerships with church and wider community that these agencies have.”
Mr Linossier said painstaking work had taken place to make the transition to Uniting as smooth as possible.
The aim is for the agencies’ work and interactions with donors, volunteers and clients to continue seamlessly under the single organisation, with the name change being the only obvious difference.
This means there should be minimal disruption to the programs and partnerships that congregations and Church members have nurtured and sustained.
There will be some transitional arrangements, for example the Share Winter Appeal will run as usual this year under that branding even as the team managing the appeal moves into Uniting.
Mr Linossier said that the ongoing generosity of Church members both as volunteers and donors was vital to Uniting’s work.
“Our board and leadership team are committed to continuing to work with local congregations and communities to support people experiencing disadvantage,” he said.
“It would be impossible for us to deliver the level of support and services we currently do without local support.”
Mr Linossier stresses the consolidation of community services will magnify the impact the Church can have.
“Together we can do more,” he said.
“This change provides the best opportunity for us to continue our important work in the community for many years to come.”
This sentiment was echoed by Share director Angela Goodwin.
“We’re excited about this move and the opportunities it provides,” she said.
“A united fundraising focus will help us raise more money, giving us greater potential to inspire people, enliven communities and confront injustice.
“We will continue to honour the wishes of donors. Whilst we may look different, the heart of Share’s work will continue and the generosity of our donors will continue to change people’s lives.”