Creating a local foundation: Insights from the Buderim Foundation

At the recent Community Development QLD Conference, guest speaker Leanne Evans from the Buderim Foundation shared the Foundations journey and key insights to creating and maintaining a local foundation.

As one of the founders, Leanne’s passion for community comes from the support she received as a Commonwealth Games silver medallist, being involved in government and non-profit organisations, including roles as Deputy Director General of the NSW Department of Sport and Recreation and CEO of the Australian Sports Foundation and a desire to give back to the community.

Leane Evans, Buderim Foundation with fellow panelists.
Leane Evans, Buderim Foundation with fellow panelists – Ann Collette, Queensland Community Foundation; Kristi Mansfield, Sydney Community Foundation; Brett Buchanan, Global Philanthropic

The Buderim Foundation actually came about because there were many people wanting to bequeth back to the local community, and but there was not an established way of ensuring funds went back into the community.  With much time, relationship building within the community and businesses, the Foundation has found structure and sustainability and continues to give back to local projects.

Key Insights from Leanne’s experience setting up a local foundation:

  • In a small community, relationship building must be slow and respectful.  You don’t want to be avoided walking down the street!
  • Structure and set up is important – Leanne and the team ensured they were set up to be able to gift to associations and non-profit projects even without DGR1 status, such as sporting groups.
  • Marketing and educating the community over a long period of time is important.


There was much discussion about other communities starting up foundations.  Please contact the Coalition of Community Boards if you are interested in starting a local foundation

Leanne shared rich information on the process of establishing a community foundation.  We would like to thank her for her time and knowledge sharing, which was so useful for many of the boards and organisations in attendance.  For more information visit the The Buderim Foundation website