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COAL COUNTS New South Wales

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To finish off the year, @ The Coalface is proud to present this special feature showcasing the contribution coal mining makes to our communities.

We’re not talking about the contribution coal mining makes to our economy, with billions of dollars paid in taxes and royalties to the Government every year. We all have to pay our taxes after all.

What we are talking about is the contributions that are not required to be made. The contributions that coal mining companies and the thousands of people working for them choose to make.

We have put together a selection of photos from 2023 to show you just how many ways coal mining companies contribute. Some contributions may only impact one person. Some ripple out across an entire town. Some last only a short while. Some will last for generations.

They all count. 

Whitehaven’s overall contribution to the Westpac Helicopter Service is more than $1,000,000 since the Tamworth base was established in 2000. This includes a significant number of donations from mine workers, which are matched dollar-for-dollar by Whitehaven Coal. 

Hunter Valley Operations apprentices planted more than 400 endangered endemic trees at Lake Liddell for Hunter Region Landcare Network.

Glencore’s Ulan Coal Complex is a proud sponsor of the PCYC Mudgee Basketball teams. This year for the first time, the U16 Male and U14 Female basketball teams travelled to Sydney to represent the Wiradjuri Nation in the PCYC Nations of Origin event.

More than 60 school aged students gathered in February to compete in the Beef Cattle Junior Judging Competition, Trade Steer or Heifer Competition and the highly contested Parader Competition at the 2023 Maitland Show. Bloomfield’s sponsorship of this event provided prize money and ribbons for the winners and runner-ups and funds to help two students compete at the Royal Easter Show in April.

Supported by the MACH Energy Mount Pleasant Operation, Aboriginal Community Development Fund, members of the Gundi Program from St Heliers visited site to recognise NAIDOC Week through awesome dance and didgeridoo performances.

Five local RFS Brigades benefitted from a donation of new gazebos thanks to Mount Owen Complex (MGO). Glennies Creek, Mirannie, Mount Royal, Albano and Goorangoola RFS all received the upgraded equipment, which offer shelter during active firefighting duties as well as community and fundraising events.

This year BHP celebrated 10 years of partnership with Upper Hunter Community Services and a commitment to extend the partnership for another 4 years.

Yancoal’s Mount Thorley Warkworth and Ashton Coal Mine were joint sponsors of the University’s Science and Engineering Challenge, a proud partnership that has been in place since 2002.

Whitehaven have supported local Clontarf academies in the region since 2016, including Oxley (Tamworth), Quirindi, Narrabri, Moree and now Gunnedah. In 2019, they committed $120,000 over three years to help establish an academy at Narrabri High School. In 2022, they extended this commitment for a further three years, becoming a national partner organisation.

Earlier this year Malabar Resources donated school supplies to the Muswellbrook Day View Club. These supplies were distributed at the start of the school year to children in need in our community.

Hunter Valley Operations sponsored the Singleton Art Prize event, which is organised and operated by the Rotary Club of Singleton. This year HVO sponsored the Still Life Prize – pictured with Environment and Community Manager Andrew Speechly.

Earlier this year, the Maitland District Motorcycle Club was vandalised and its facilities burned down. As the club looked to rebuild, The Bloomfield Group through Kings Engineering came to their aid with a significant donation. Due to the community’s help, the club was ready to host the Penrite ProMX Championship when it returned to Maitland in early May.

Glencore is a Foundation Partner of MATES in Mining, as well as having representation on the advisory board and advocating for the work that MATES in Mining sets out to achieve in the industry. As part of the partnership MATES in Mining delivers suicide awareness and prevention training and provides ongoing support to more than 10,000 employees across Glencore Coal’s 16 operations.

The MACH Energy Mount Pleasant Operation Aboriginal Community Development Fund supported trainees to participate in a new state of the art, industry leading Cat 793 Mining simulator in Muswellbrook. The inaugural group was pictured during their first mine tour at Mount Pleasant.

Glencore’s Liddell operation donation to the Hunter Valley Fly Fishing Club (HVFFC) supported their re-stocking program which has been operating for over 20 years. 10,800 Australian Bass fingerlings have been released into Lake St Clair, near Singleton.

This year, Mount Thorley Warkworth (MTW) opened its gates for employees, contractors, neighbours and their families to get a firsthand experience of being at the coalface and to have some fun as part of the operation’s first Yancoal family day. Over 3,500 people flocked to the site over two consecutive weekends to enjoy a day of activities.

Bengalla’s scholarship program has had an overhaul this year with the 2023 Scholarships expanding into other departments. Students will now be eligible if they are studying topics such as HR, health & safety, accounting, engineering as well as many other areas.

Contributions to Gunnedah’s Salvation Army Christmas Appeal extend beyond Whitehaven itself, to employees and families generously donating various items, from gift vouchers to hampers.  

Hunter Valley Operations raised $10,000 for the Mark Hughes Foundation through the sale of hard hat stickers to its staff.

Through an ongoing donation, the Bloomfield Group Foundation provides funding for the Singleton Neighbourhood Centre’s ‘Open Door’ Project Manager. The Open Door runs Monday to Thursday from 8:30am-11:30am, providing support for people experiencing disadvantage in the Singleton Community.

Whitehaven contributed $6000 to assist with the upgrade of the Boggabri Lions Club’s mobile BBQ trailer.  

This year Malabar Resources helped the Muswellbrook South Public School ‘green team’ to purchase and plant fruit and native trees for their school garden.

Whitehaven has supported the Quirindi Silo Art Movement with a substantial contribution recognising that the project provides a much-needed boost to the local economy and creates employment opportunities for people in the area.

Eighteen Singleton residents gained vital skills to help other community with Hunter Valley Operations funding a free place for them in Novaskill Hunter Valley’s Mental Health First Aid course.

Every year Mudgee turns pink in support of the McGrath Foundation for Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Glencore’s Ulan Coal Complex is proud to get behind the cause. This year they hosted a fundraising breakfast.

A raffle (DOING IT FOR BANGERS) was organised for Graham (Bangers) McBride who works at The Bloomfield Group’s Rix’s Creek Mine. Bangers not only lost his wife and daughter in the tragic Greta Bus Crash, but also sustained life changing injuries. Rix’s Creek’s Michael Lawman, with a lot of help from colleagues Troy Peacock, Martin Horrocks, Neville Elphick, the Rix’s Creek workforce and The Bloomfield Group, along with the overwhelming support from the community and suppliers successfully organised donated prizes valued over $50,000 to raffle and auction on the day of the draw. The $200,000 raised will go to Graham to help him to focus on the important ongoing steps of his recovery.

In partnership with the Polly Farmer Foundation, students and tutors worked on an art project to be displayed on one of Bengalla’s truck trays. The artwork was based on the theme ‘wellness and care’.

Until recently, Boggabri Public School had only 20 working laptops for its 90-strong student population. This changed when Whitehaven joined forces with fellow resources company Idemitsu, spending $60,000 to donate 90 new laptops.

Thiess proudly sponsors the Australian Resources and Energy Employer Association’s Bright Future STEM program. Thiess role models shared their career insights to more than 230 students at this year’s International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC).

Five new Hunter Valley Operation’s mining trucks painted in the colours of a local charity got to work this year. Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service, Hunter Prostate Cancer Alliance, Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation, Singleton Family Support and Type 1 Foundation will each receive a donation based on the haulage of their respective truck.

Bengalla is proud to partner with Muswellbrook Public School to boost students swimming skills and their confidence in the water through their intensive swimming program.

For the past seven years, Whitehaven has proudly sponsored the Gomeroi Roos, watching the boys from Gunnedah hone their skills, aspiring to become the next Ruby League superstars.         

Each year Malabar Resources provides financial assistance to our local wildlife carers at Roohaven Wildlife to help cover costs to rehabilitate and release injured native wildlife.

At United Wambo Joint Venture’s Family Open Day, guests collaborated on stunning artworks to demonstrate the importance of working safely. Each hand symbolises the commitment to returning home safely after every shift.

Bloomfield was a proud sponsor for the Maitland Heritage Festival in June this year and have already confirmed their sponsorship of the festival in 2024.

Whitehaven has proudly donated $35,000 to Boggabri Hospital to support the upgrade of its facilities.     

Liz Watts and the Mt Arthur Coal team at Rock n the Brook. BHP is a proud sponsor of this event.

Bengalla team up with Muswellbrook Shire Council to provide a free event for the local community. The Easter Family Fun Day is a great chance for families to get together, have a picnic, join in the children’s activities, and of course, there is a visit from the Easter Bunny.

Employees from Glencore’s Liddell Coal Operations raised a total of $12,000 for Singleton Cancer Appeal, Black Dog Ride and Singleton Neighbourhood Centre. The money will help assist these services in providing vital support to Singleton locals battling cancer, facing mental health challenges, or experiencing financial hardship.

Players at the Singleton Junior Rugby Union Club are enjoying rugby training with new equipment, thanks to funding from Yancoal Australia’s Mount Thorley Warkworth (MTW) operation. The $5,000 donation enabled the junior rugby club to purchase a tackle mat, hit shields and tackle bags. 

Whitehaven is proud to have made a significant financial contribution towards Gunnedah’s new Koala Sanctuary with a $2 million contribution.     

As part of the Malabar Resources Community Sponsorship Program, Open Door were gifted with four new cooking pots and over $200 worth of food and kitchen supplies for their pantry.

Glencore partnered with Solider On, an organisation that helps current and former Defence families. Through this collaboration Glencore is supporting the Pathways Program which offers employment support, educational and training opportunities to veterans and their families as they make the transition to a new career.

The Bloomfield Group is proud to help local sporting clubs nurture and encourage their junior players. Funding from Bloomfield over a number of years has helped Maitland Rugby Blacks Netball (MRBN) provide skill development and coaching opportunities for the Club’s Junior players. The Bloomfield Group also supports skill development and coaching opportunities for junior netballers at Singleton Netball Club.

Whitehaven partnered with the PCYC to sponsor twenty participants per term in their structured sport and creative-based activities as well as provide a sizeable contribution to enable outreach equipment to be purchased.

Students at Australian Christian College (ACC) Singleton struck a chord on their new musical equipment, thanks to a $3,700 donation from Ashton Coal. The funding has purchased new musical instruments including 28 classical guitars and 28 ukelele’s to enhance the junior school music program.

Kirkton Public School are a beneficiary of Glencore Schools P&C Grants program. Through the grants program they have been able introduce a garden, kitchen and cooking program, upgrade their playground and purchase new play equipment, and most recently build a Yarning Circle which will be enjoyed by students for many years to come.

A donation from Whitehaven has enabled the Boggabri Golf Club to purchase a larger mower and new AV equipment to enhance the overall experience for players and visitors alike.  

Hunter Valley Operations General Manager Dave Foster took the Leaders Leap off McDonalds Jones Stadium to raise more than $4000 for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service.

Ravensworth Open Cut operation supported the Early Links Big Yellow Bus, which visits kids in the Muswellbrook community. The Big Yellow Bus is a mobile playground that allows children to learn and grow in a fun and safe environment. Parents who attend can also build friendships and receive support when needed.​ Klay, Sam, and Dylan from Ravensworth took the opportunity to visit the bus and see the fantastic mobile playground in action. 

The NSW Mining and Newcastle Knights Voice for Mining Family Day saw a sell-out crowd pack McDonald Jones stadium. For the fifth year MACH Energy Mount Pleasant Operation were front and centre with its football passing game and were absolutely thrilled for its Land & Property Officer and his family as they took a special part in the day’s events.

Since the beginning of 2023, another three Singleton learner drivers have got their red P’s thanks to Singleton PCYC’s DRIVE program. The DRIVE program helps disadvantaged young local people gain their driving licence by providing driving mentors and financial assistance for driving lessons. The Bloomfield Group Foundation is a proud supporter of the DRIVE program.

Whitehaven’s Maules Creek Community Open Day in April was a huge success, with its people and their families joining the local community for a great day out at the Boggabri Showground.

October was Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the team at Peabody’s Wilpinjong Mine spruced up a water cart with a coat of pink paint and donned special hi-vis shirts to Pink Up the local Mudgee community. The site raised $15,000 which will help support additional McGrath Foundation breast care nurses in rural NSW.

Bengalla are proud sponsors of the Sport in School Gymnastics Program at Muswellbrook Public School. This program is a great opportunity for kids to try a new sport, have some fun and learn some great co-ordination skills.

Black n Blue is an Aboriginal-run boxing gym and youth centre that has been welcoming locals through its doors for the last 20 years. Whitehaven has contributed $10,000 towards the maintenance and upkeep of the gym’s facilities and equipment.   

Malabar Resources continues to show that we can coexist with other industries. Internationally known winemaker Atsuko Radcliffe from Small Forest is located at Malabar Resources Merton Vineyard.

Singleton Heights Pre-school children completed a Stars Basketball program thanks to a Hunter Valley Operations community grant.

Glencore are sponsors of the Hunter WISE Schools Outreach Program, supporting Australian Christian College Singleton and St Catherine’s Catholic College, Singleton. As part of the partnership, students took a tour of the United Wambo Joint Venture operation, highlighting the importance of the program that is aimed at increasing young girls’ enthusiasm for STEM-careers.

Indigenous Pathways Employment Program 2023 (NSW)

Glencore Indigenous Employment Pathways Program (IEPP) operates in both NSW and QLD. The purpose of the program is to provide work readiness and training opportunities for Indigenous Australians in the community. Not only can the program lead to employment in the mining industry, but it also allows the participants to transfer the skills they have learnt to other careers.

Glencore’s Ulan Coal Complex donated almost $10,000 to support Western NSW Local Health District. The funding will help to improve facilities that support child and youth mental health care in the Mudgee region.

Whitehaven enjoys a continued partnership with Nurruby Boggabri Early Learning Facility which opened in June 2021. They are dedicated to supporting this initiative with a $100,000 investment over five years for staff training and education.     

MACH Energy Mount Pleasant Operation invited members of the Muswellbrook and District Historical Society and its near neighbours for morning tea and a tour of Broomfield Station.

Malabar Resources was happy to help out the Muswellbrook Cats AFC by donating prizes for their major fundraiser for the year.

Hunter Valley Operations staff got around R U OK day with a BBQ and some time to chat and check in with each other.

The Bloomfield Group and Foundation have recently had the opportunity to support some of our local volunteer groups who help our communities during and after natural disasters such as fire and flood. Bloomfield is proud to support Benwerrin Volunteer Rural Fire Brigade, Darlington Rural Fire Brigade and BlazeAid Inc (Singleton team).

Bailey George marks 73pts to win the second round of the 8-U11 Steer Ride

Whitehaven was a major sponsor of the ABCRA (Australian Bushmen’s Campdraft and Rodeo Association) National Finals this year. In addition to the National Finals Rodeo, they also sponsored the ABCRA Campdraft National Finals, held in Tamworth in November.  

R U OK day at Mt Arthur Coal in support of ‘Where there’s a Will’. The foundation works with schools and the community to improve mental health and wellbeing in the Upper Hunter.

Dedicated to creating positive community outcomes, Idemitsu Australia’s Boggabri Coal Mine celebrated the opening of its Nurruby Boggabri Early Learning Facility last year and has recently committed to the future development and expansion of Glentarkie, an independent aged care living facility.

Bengalla are supporters of the Where There’s A Will, Mental Health First Aid Program which is about empowering awareness and skills for critical early interventions. By giving teenagers the ability and the knowledge of what to do when a peer or loved ones experience difficult times, it gives them the skills to help create a happy, healthy, and thriving high school community.

Glencore’s Bulga Open Cut coal mine contribution to flood relief and recovery efforts during and after the July 2022 floods that impacted the Broke and Bulga villages was so significant that they were awarded the President’s Award at the 2023 Business Singleton Awards and recognised in the Community Excellence category in the 2023 NSW Mining Health, Safety, Environment and Community Awards.

Bailey George marks 73pts to win the second round of the 8-U11 Steer Ride

Whitehaven was a major sponsor of the ABCRA (Australian Bushmen’s Campdraft and Rodeo Association) National Finals this year. In addition to the National Finals Rodeo, they also sponsored the ABCRA Campdraft National Finals, held in Tamworth in November.  

A Hunter Valley Operations community grant helped Singleton Neighbourhood Centre provide around 240 free cooked meals a week to local people in need through its OpenDoor@SNC program.

In June, Gunnedah’s historic Kurrumbede property was transformed back to its former glory with many turning out for a 1930s inspired community open day, run by Whitehaven Coal and the Dorothea Mackellar Memorial Society.

In March, Bloomfield held a Family Day at Rix’s Creek North. Around 700 employees and family members attended the fun packed Sunday full of entertainment and delicious free food and drinks. The showcased trucks and equipment, along with the Site Tours were highlights for many, marking the day a huge success.

Through its Community Investment Program, Glencore is supporting students like Lluka and Isaac from St Joseph’s High School in Aberdeen with a scholarship to help them in first year of further study.

Whitehaven have contributed $25,000 to support the delivery of around 16 free pop-up medical clinics in partnership with local hospitals, Aboriginal Medical Centres and General Practitioner Clinics to ensure families can access healthcare support where it’s needed most.    

The Singleton Amateur Swimming Club who have recently upgraded their facility with a large new storage shed, thanks to a $17,000 donation from Mount Thorley Warkworth (MTW). This will allow the clubhouse to be fully operational and utilised effectively for canteen food preparation, club meetings, and host officials, referees and NSW swimming representatives.

Mt Arthur Coal held an AFLW coaching clinic with Chloe Molloy to celebrate International Women’s Day 2023.

For the past 14 years, Glencore has been supporting conservation efforts to protect one of the world’s rarest endangered mammals – the Northern Hairy-Nosed Wombat. This year they committed a further $2.1 million to bring this little Aussie battler back from the brink of extinction.

Many employees of The Bloomfield Group generously support charities through Workplace Giving deductions from their pay. In the 22/23 financial year, Bloomfield employees donated a total of $50,073, with Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service, Police Citizens Youth Club and Youth off the Streets being the main recipients.

Malabar Resources has been and continues to be the Major Club Sponsor for the Denman Sandy Hollow Junior Rugby League Club.

Bloomfield was a proud sponsor of the Hunter Valley’s Special Olympics Basketball tournament which took place at the Maitland Basketball Stadium in May. Maitland hosted 122 athletes from all over NSW including Orange, Central Coast, Sydney, Wollongong, and Port Macquarie.

Photo Credit: Taylah Maree Photography

As Whitehaven prepares to bid farewell to its Werris Creek Coal Mine, the community were invited to a family fun day in October.

Copyright © At The Coalface Communications Pty Ltd

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