Our approach

Downer is committed to supporting the success of the communities in which we operate by fostering and maintaining enduring relationships built upon trust. We have a commitment to open and transparent communication and recognise our responsibility to contribute positively to society.

As we work in regional and remote locations, we actively implement a range of strategies focusing on local and Indigenous employment, cultural heritage management and stakeholder engagement.

In addition to providing local employment opportunities, Downer is also focused on making a difference through partnerships, sponsorships and donations.

Our community initiatives support our business strategy goal of driving growth in core markets which are achieved through a range of initiatives, including community and Indigenous partnerships.

Our performance

In Australia,
Downer supports:

Wall of Hands (Australian
Literacy & Numeracy Foundation)

Downer has been a proud supporter of the Australian Literacy & Numeracy Foundation’s Wall of Hands Appeal since 2013. The ALNF works with Indigenous communities and schools around Australia with the aim that five out of five kids will learn to read – the vital first step to a satisfying and successful life. The ALNF is the first national charity dedicated to raising language, literacy and numeracy standards in Australia. Closing the Indigenous literacy gap is a serious, long-term issue and Downer is a proud supporter of this very worthy cause.

Wandering Warriors

Downer supports the Wandering Warriors, a fundraising initiative run by the Australian Special Air Service Association. It comprises mainly ex-servicemen and women, who are committed to the care and support of our veterans. The organisation provides mentoring, education, coaching and employment opportunities to veterans through their transition from military to civilian life.

Wandering Warriors provides a platform for prominent business and military leaders to step into non-executive support roles. Downer Executive General Manager of Defence, Brett Sangster, is proud to be a team member and ambassador for the Wandering Warriors.

Great Barrier Reef Foundation

Downer supports the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, which was established in 1999 to fund vital research to protect and preserve Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

It is the lead charity dedicated to protecting the Great Barrier Reef through funding solutions grounded in science, technology, engineering and on-ground action to ensure their long-term conservation.

In New Zealand,
Downer supports

Genesis Youth Trust

The Trust aims to reduce the levels of youth-offending in New Zealand's most affected communities (principally within the wider Auckland Region) in a cost-effective manner through enabling youth at risk to profoundly transform their lives for the benefit of themselves, their whanau and their community. Downer is a First Foundation Scholarship Partner and provides financial assistance towards tertiary fees for selected high school students who are the first in their family to attend university.


The #BuildAKL campaign has been developed by construction and infrastructure sector employers, in partnership with Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development, and aims to get Auckland’s young people into employment in the construction and infrastructure industry. Downer is a key partner for the program.

Community sponsorships

Downer is the Major Partner of Sunshine Coast Lightning, one of eight professional teams competing in Suncorp Super Netball, Australia’s national women’s netball competition.

The team is based at the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, and formed in 2017. In the inaugural year of both the team and the competition, Sunshine Coast Lightning won the Grand Final and were crowned Suncorp Super Netball champion for 2017. On 26 August 2018, the Lightning defended its title and won its second successive championship. The team is a joint venture owned by the Melbourne Storm and University of Sunshine Coast.

Our Future Focus

Progress has been made on last year's focus areas and this year we will focus on:

  • Further develop the framework for strengthening our relationships with the communities in which we operate.
  • Year on year increase employee involvement in community activities and partnerships.