It’s no secret that mining communities have suffered recently. The nature of FIFO work and other factors have diluted that feeling of being part of something bigger with a common cause.
But it’s organisations like Miners’ Promise and what they do to support miners and their families in times of need that are bringing back that sense of community and common bonds that the mining industry and mining communities desperately need.
It’s a phenomenal organisation that more people should know about.
What is Miners’ Promise?
Miners’ Promise is one of those stories of people in the mining community coming together and creating something really amazing.
Miners’ Promise is a not-for-profit, member-based support organisation that provides a lifeline for miners and their families when things get tough.
The organisation’s Family Support Adviser, Geniene, puts it like this: “we support members and their families – emotional support, practical and financial. We come on board when a family is impacted by a significant crisis,” she says.
“It’s really very much a tailor-made support plan that we come up with for the family. It’s amazing. I see first hand the difference the support makes that we give the families,” Geniene explains.
“Sometimes you get this phone call from a family, from a member, and they’re on a boat that’s kinda starting to sink. It feels like, in my role, we’re able to step onto that boat with them and be calm. You know the difference when one person is calm on a boat and just lets everyone know we’re not going to sink. It’s going to be okay. So we sort of step onto the boat with them,” she says.
What does it do?
It’s clear that Miners’ Promise does a lot of great work. But this important work goes way beyond simply offering a sort of insurance policy for tough times.
As Geniene describes it, the bigger picture for Miners’ Promise is to help miners and their families live better, more positive and fulfilling lives. “One thing that Miners’ Promise aspires to do, as well as being there when things are tough, is being there is everyday life, and giving people the tools to enjoy everyday life more,” she says.
“Our motto is your family, our family, so we want to support families in that day-to-day running of normal life, but also getting the most out of your life, and living with a positive mindset, giving them the tools that they can implement in their families and stopping any potentially negative spiral,” Geniene says.
How do I get involved?
As you would expect with a charity like Miners’ Promise resources are limited. It runs off people’s goodwill, donations and the tireless work of its staff.
The beauty of becoming involved with Miners’ Promise is that it’s us as an industry and as mining communities helping ourselves.
So how do you get involved? First up, become a member. It could be one of the best decisions you and your family make. Otherwise, you can help Miners’ Promise fulfil its important work by donating directly to the organisation.
Other options include talking to your co-workers and your company’s HR department about company-wide support membership. It’s good for the company and good for its workforce. Even simply getting the word out there among your community can help.
I’ll leave the last word to Geniene. “At the end of the day, it’s all about people. People need to know that they’re not alone when things go wrong. No one can escape things in life. One day everyone is going to experience a hardship of some sort, grief of some sort, and they need to know that they are not alone.”
You can hear the entire conversation with Geniene from Miners’ Promise here.
To join or donate to Miners’ Promise visit minerspromise.org.au or phone 1300 124 01.