The purpose of Asthma Foundation of Victoria is to create a better life for those who are suffering due to asthma. It was founded in 1963 by mothers who wanted their children and grandchildren to have a better life. They wanted the betterment to continue for generations; hence the foundation of the organization was laid. Though at the beginning the motive of this foundation was purely personal but the focus became wider as these mothers thought about other children. The need of time was to educate people and raise awareness regarding asthma so that they knew what is needed in times of emergency. The work has now been extended to raise awareness of anaphylaxis. As the world changes, the needs of people suffering with a permanent ailment also change. This is taken into account by the Asthma Foundation of Victoria.
Quality of life can be improved through education, resources, research, training, advocacy and support and this is what the Asthma Foundation of Victoria keeps in mind while assisting over 600,000 Victorians. All these people, suffering with asthma, are looking forward to improve their quality of life through this assistance.
The mission of Asthma Foundation of Victoria is to improve lives of asthmatic people. Over 400 people die in Australia each year because of asthma and it is the major reason of child hospitalization. Also one in ten people are victims of asthma or other respiratory disorders in Australia. This makes it a nation with the highest rate of the disease.
Core Values of the foundation are integrity, learning, people, communication, innovation and advocacy. The stakeholders of the organization are given timely reports of all the happening. In this way trust and accountability is promoted. The importance of good relationships is fully accounted for in the core values of the organization.
Any organization, charitable or other, cannot survive and sustain without the efforts of people. Long term working staff and volunteers help in driving the organization towards its goals. These people are provided the necessary resources so that they can carry out their jobs effectively. They can play their role in improving the lives of people with asthma and chronic respiratory conditions which include allergy and anaphylaxis.
Working voluntarily does not mean that the performance of the staff will not be taken into account. Regular reviews of performance are undertaken and necessary training is provided to overcome any lacking. The foundation strongly seems to believe in growth at the personal and organizational level.
Volunteers and partners are not just expected to do work for the organization. They are given access to decision making in the organization. This is ensured through good communication with the stakeholders so that information is shared with them and they have the opportunity to participate to a better extent. This way the acts will be more objective as volunteers will have background knowledge of what led to the course of action.
A successful organization is responsive to the changes that take place around it. Changes are encouraged in Asthma Foundation of Victoria so that creativity is enhanced and there is a tendency to react positively to change.
It is important that the needs of people are listened to and taken into account and understood so that their lives can be more active and safe. This is ensured through organizational advocacy which is engraved in foundational beliefs of the organization. Not only people suffering with asthma are included in this but also those with other chronic conditions like allergy and anaphylaxis.
Asthma Child and Adolescent Program
The Asthma Child and Adolescent Program is supported by the Commonwealth Department for Health and covers the whole country. Asthma management in an education setting is completely different which is why teachers and students need to be trained regarding the problem. This program trains teachers and staff regarding the management of an attack. These asthma management training sessions are usually an hour long and are conducted for free. A form on the website is available should anyone want the conductors to visit their school or institution. It also includes parents besides the school staff.
Community Support Program
Another program that is supported by the Commonwealth nationwide is the Community Support Program. One hour training sessions about asthma and other respiratory disorders related to it are conducted under this category. The recipients of these trainings are disability support workers, health professionals, seniors, volunteers and other people who may be culturally and linguistically different.
Asthma Friendly School Program
Under this program, schools all over Victoria are covered and sessions are held to make them asthma friendly schools. This program started in 2001 and aims to raise awareness and conduct training which makes the whole school community suitable for patients of asthma.
Without corporate partners, this and other charitable organizations cannot survive in terms of finance and continuity. Corporate partnership with this foundation helps to bring stakeholders, volunteers and companies on a single platform with the same purpose: care for asthmatic people.
The Asthma Community
Asthma Foundation of Victoria also overlooks The Asthma Community where it connects volunteers with people who have concern regarding their or a loved one’s disease. Sometimes a teenager with asthma would prefer not to carry the puffer because he believes it will cause embarrassment in front of peers. These genuine problems will be resorted to and resolved with the help of volunteers who will discuss, explain and do their part as a counsellor.
Anyone who wants to contribute in the lives of 600,000 people suffering with respiratory disorders can either donate, raise awareness or assist in fundraising. Energy and skills can be utilized for the betterment of people.
The foundation currently shows two ambassadors who represent the efforts of the Asthma Foundation of Victoria. One of them is a cross country female skiing champion, Clare, who is asthmatic but now retired. The other is Elli Johnston who had lost a brother to asthma and since then she has wanted to play her part in making others care for people with asthma.