Michelle Gilchrist, from the Queensland-based charity The Breakfast Club Redcliffe, first learned it would receive a Commonwealth Bank community grant from the local branch manager who nominated the organisation.

But she says the news didn’t feel real until she heard it announced on the radio.

“It [the grant] makes a big difference… every little bit counts,” says Ms Gilchrist, the chairperson of The Breakfast Club. The charity provides free meals and other much-needed support services for people on the Redcliffe peninsula, north of Brisbane, who are experiencing homeless and other forms of disadvantage.

“We run five meals a week, and we also do a crisis hub, which is a drop-in centre, which is predominantly gives the homeless somewhere to be two mornings a week,” she tells CBA Newsroom.

“We also run an outreach program twice a week when we travel around the peninsula of Redcliffe checking in on the homeless and making sure they're all right, and just keeping contact — connecting the community, basically,” she adds.

The Club is one of 200 organisations around Australia that received a $10,000 donation via the CommBank Staff Foundation’s Community Grants 2022 program, which were announced in November.

The $2 million pool of grants is made up of regular contributions by CommBank staff which are matched by the bank. Grant recipients are nominated by CommBank employees who tap the charities they’re most passionate about to receive funding.

Ms Gilchrist said the Breakfast Club is putting their grant towards sourcing and operating a “sleep bus” that offers safe beds for the homeless community.

The grant will also help to “take the pressure off” the organisation as its everyday expenses increase amid the rising cost of living.

“Our meal costs have just about doubled in the last three months… at this time when things like food prices are going up,” says Ms Gilchrist. “And we've gone from [serving] around 1200 meals a month to 1600.”

For the full list of 2022 grant recipients, which includes organisations working in areas including mental health, cancer research, the arts and Indigenous support, visit: commbank.com.au/communitygrants

The grants program is just one part of CommBank’s commitment to making a positive contribution to the communities it serves and supporting Australia through challenging times.

Other community highlights between July and December 2022 included the more than $2.7 million raised by the 7000-plus employees who took part in our annual cancer fundraising program Can4Cancer, and the bank’s continued support of Thread Together, with over 500 staff volunteering at their fulfilment centre and further partnering to install a new wardrobe and capsule service in 100 women’s refuges across the country.

Go to CBA Newsroom for the latest news and announcements from Commonwealth Bank.