Our story

Foundation SA was established in late 2020 to grow giving and positively impact the South Australian community.

In recent years, it had become clear that South Australia needed an organisation that could serve as a vehicle for like-minded people to support the community and causes close to their hearts. The Wyatt Trust saw this need and in keeping with the legacy of Dr William Wyatt, resolved to establish a new community foundation to benefit the state.

Wyatt has supported South Australians since 1886 and could see that Foundation SA was an opportunity to work collaboratively with others who share similar values, as well as extending support for South Australians beyond the remit of Wyatt’s work.

Foundation SA is backed by two implementation partners:

The Wyatt Trust

The Wyatt Trust has generously provided the initial investment capital and funding for the start-up operational costs of Foundation SA, as well as the rigour, governance and experience of the staff and Board.

Australian Communities Foundation

Australian Communities Foundation has over 20 years’ experience catalysing positive social and environmental change across Australia, with more than 350 sub-funds and $110 million in funds under management. As implementation partner and Trustee, Australian Communities Foundation has supported Foundation SA to develop best practice investment and grant making procedures and policies.

Our team

Stacey Thomas

CEO

Stacey Thomas is one of Australia’s most respected leaders in philanthropy. Her deep knowledge of the sector, together with her personal values of equity and social justice, and a preternatural instinct for collaboration, underpin her leadership at Foundation SA.

“I love the community foundation model because it can give identity to groups of donors who work together to support such varied causes and issues in our society”, Stacey says in relation to the establishment of Foundation SA. “The Wyatt Trust could see a gap in people’s ability to give at scale to impact community and Foundation SA provides the perfect solution”.

While philanthropy is often described as a balancing act between head and heart, Stacey knows that creating lasting impact requires both.

“Working in the sector exposes you to so much you would never have normally had the opportunity to see,” she explains. “Sometimes it is very confronting, and other times it’s incredibly heart-warming; either way it’s an absolute privilege”.

“I’ve experienced first-hand the benefits of engaging my family in community giving through a family sub-fund. I love speaking to the kids about their areas of interest and aligning this to our granting”.

Stacey previously held roles at the Fay Fuller Foundation, Myer Family Company and Telstra Foundation. She is a Director at Philanthropy Australia, the country’s peak body for philanthropy.

Sophie Doyle

PHILANTHROPY & ENGAGEMENT MANAGER

Community-mindedness and positive impact are the hallmarks of Sophie Doyle’s career. Even while working for one of the country’s biggest law firms, Sophie’s left a lasting legacy by establishing the company’s SA/NT Foundation, workplace giving and staff volunteering programs. She is also a co-founder of MumKIND, a SA-based charity that supports families experiencing family violence.

During her time at Philanthropy Australia, Sophie managed the peak body’s membership programs in SA and WA, developing strong networks within the non-profit and philanthropic sectors.

“I love that working in philanthropy gives me the ability to get people thinking about giving,” Sophie says. “Everyone can make an impact, but often people don’t know how to start.”

In her role at Foundation SA, South Australia’s state-wide community foundation, Sophie intends to help even more people experience the rewards of giving.

“I can’t wait to share the opportunities our new community foundation creates for donors and the non-profits supporting our community,” she says.

“Inspiring people to think about giving back to their local community and seeing the joy this brings is why I do what I do”.