Article from 2021/2022 Impact of Giving Annual Report
RCH corporate supporter M&S Transport is a second generation family owned business that operates primarily in the energy and power, mining, defence and specialised manufacturing markets. Founded in 1974, the business has since grown to have a network of over 800 vehicles across Australia, while not losing sight of what matters close to home.
Like many in the community, M&S Transport General Manager, Travis Madden, found the COVID-19 pandemic served as a reminder that life is fragile, and that we are all more connected than we often realise.
“I would say that it is very easy to take life for granted. We have immense strength when we have to stand and support each other,” he said.
“Giving back is important to our business and our family because there are people in our community who need support, and who often do not have a voice. Those of us in a fortunate position can provide assistance to those in need,” said Travis.
As Christmas 2020 was approaching, the M&S Transport team decided to break with tradition. In lieu of supplying their clients with small festive gifts, they instead elected to sponsor two beds on Kookaburra, the oncology ward at the RCH.
“The response we received from our clients was overwhelming,” said Travis.
“It was exceptionally well received with many people personally reaching out to me to thank us for making the switch. It was because of this response from our business family, our network, that I realised giving to the RCH Foundation would become a permanent part of our organisation. Giving back and supporting those less fortunate,or who are battling life threatening illness – especially children – is incredibly valuable.”
Like many parents across Melbourne, Travis has experienced the Emergency Department at the RCH, with both his son and daughter needing urgent care in their younger years. Fortunately, his family has never faced a life altering illness or requireda long term stay – but he understands that there are many that have and do every day.
“The wards of the RCH are filled with children who are battling life threatening illness. At a time in their lives when they should be in parks and playgrounds, they are receiving infusions and immunotherapy. They exhibit bravery, courage and dignity on a level beyond the comprehension of most of us. Where else could we find a more worthy cause than to stand with those brave children, their parents, and the staff of the RCH?”
As the company approaches its 50 year anniversary, M&S Transport has increased their bed sponsorships at the RCH. Travis feels strongly that there is power in helping people, and there is value and a greater sense of purpose when you support people in need.
“High performance mindfulness coach Emma Murray speaks of trauma hitting like a hurricane, and how futile it is to try and stop the hurricane, despite an overwhelming urge to take the pain away,” said Travis.
“We need better methods of helping people cope with hurricanes in their lives. Whether this comes in the form of medical care, mental health support or meals and accommodation for parents supporting their sick children, it all costs money.”
“We may not have the skills or the talents to be able to provide it ourselves, but we can donate our time and money to those who can. We can lend a hand in our own way,” he added.