Scholar Profile - Robyn Coleman PDF Print E-mail
Robyn Coleman


CEO at Apex Camp Jurien Inc, Volunteer Chair at Bridging Communities, and Consulting Chair at HHG Giving Back program

Awarded an AICD scholarship for The NFP Chairman course in 2014, and a Bankwest Foundation / AICD scholarship for the Advanced Not-for-Profit Governance Course, 2015

What sort of work do your organisations do?

Apex Camp Jurien – Youth and Recreation Camp for youth groups and disadvantaged families.

Bridging Communities – Charity that helps people in necessitous circumstances who do not fit other Charities criteria.

HHG Giving Back Program – Philanthropic program supporting four charities in WA.

Describe a typical day's work.

Reconciling accounts in MYOB, liaising with Board Members of all my NFP entities, seeking and applying for grants / funding / donations for Bridging Communities and Apex Camp Jurien, developing and transmitting marketing material to stakeholders and respective target market, developing and managing profile raising and / or fund raising events, liaising with other charities, and employing & managing staff.

What are some of the key learnings from the courses?

You’re not alone – many NFPs are in the same or similar situation, so network and seek advice. Ensure a well-structured Board with clearly defined roles and responsibilities. Have a well-defined purpose and strategy. Be organised, plan ahead, work smarter over working harder. Continuously be on the alert for new / different methods of achieving organisation goals. Continuously work and rework the plan, measuring outcomes against strategic plan.

How have they impacted / changed / benefited your role and your organisation as a whole?

I’m lucky to be able to share the information with many other NFPs, whether I am directly involved or associated with them. The courses continue to help with structure and guidance, keep me up to date with latest requirements and challenge me to consider different methods of accomplishing the organisation’s goals. The courses are of great benefit when listening to other delegates and learning from their experiences. The impact leaves me refreshed and reinvigorated.

How did you come to be working in the not-for-profit sector?

I’ve been working in the NFP sector, initially as a volunteer since I was 15, fuelled by an inner need to make the world a better place, guided by significant circumstances in my life. I have used the experiences of an abusive upbringing to bring direct relief to others who find themselves in the same circumstances. I was suicidal for many years and then found myself in a position as carer for a suicidal person, then went on to directly assist families dealing with successful or unsuccessful attempts at suicide within their family or network. It led me to a stint on the Ministerial Council for Suicide prevention. Low self-esteem as a child has led me to be a counsellor in local, national and international youth leadership and self-esteem development programs.

What do you feel is most needed to sustain and build the impact of the not-for-profit sector?

This question makes me smile. What is most needed? The setting aside of egos and personal agendas. That will lead to collaborative learning and working together on areas of general and common interest and expense. About 20% of what NFPs do is “proprietary”; the rest is general and collaboration of the 75 – 80% would lessen public fatigue, volunteer fatigue and organisational expense.

What is something interesting / unique / unusual about you?

I am able to cut through clutter and identify unique opportunities for organisations. I went to school in PMH as a child. I danced in a ballroom team that represented Australia and came third in the World Championships. I was the first woman in Australia to start, own and manage a Mobile phone Repair business in the 90s. I was the first woman District Governor in Rotary District 9470 in WA. I was the first person in the world to start and host a Rotary TV show in 2004-2005. It won a National Award for Best Interview Program.

Click here to read about other ASF scholars.

Click here to find out more about the Bankwest Foundation Community Leader Scholarship Program.

"The courses continue to help with structure and guidance, keep me up to date with latest requirements and challenge me to consider different methods of accomplishing the organisation’s goals."


Robyn is a highly influential networker, innovative fundraiser and long term member of the disability and NFP sectors. She has held the CEO position at Apex Camp Jurien Inc since early 2014, and also works in a governance capacity for various other not-for-profit organisations in WA.

In 2015, ASF awarded Robyn a scholarship to attend the AICD's Advanced NFP Governance Course, supported by the Bankwest Foundation, AICD and ASF.


Annual revenue / size:

Small - $80,000 - $250,000 pa

Segment of NFP sector:

Culture and Recreation

Operating in: