The Malta Community Chest Fund is a charitable institution chaired by The President of Malta. The President’s spouse is the Deputy Chairperson. The aim of the institution is to help philanthropic institutions and more importantly, the individuals with different needs. The Fund does not receive any funds from the Government. However, throughout the year, various activities such as balls and concerts are organised by the Fund and also by the Office of The President to raise funds. The Malta Community Chest Fund also relies on the generosity of corporate companies and the general public for the collection of money.
On the 22nd April 2015, the Malta Community Chest Fund became a foundation. This was one of the main wishes of Her Excellency Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, with one of the main aims being that the operations of the Malta Community Chest Fund will gain more visibility whilst being highly scrutinised. More information about the structure of the Foundation can be found in the About Us Section below.
The setting up of the Malta Community Chest Fund dates back to the Governing era of Sir Robert Laycock who began organising the Ball of the August Moon in order to raise funds towards the Malta Playing Fields Association. The ball was organised for the first time around 1958 and this event became an integral part of the yearly calendar even under the governorship of Sir Guy Grantham and Governor Sir Maurice Dorman.
Under the Governance of Sir Maurice Dorman, various philanthropic institutions were against the fact that the funds were always devolved to the Malta Playing Fields Association. Consequently, Sir Maurice Dorman, decided to create a ‘charity chest’ from which funds various institutions could benefit. Thus the funds raised from The Ball of the August Moon started being channelled towards this ‘charity chest’.
The first President of Malta, Sir Anthony Mamo continued organising the Ball of the August Moon on a regular basis. It was at this time that this ‘charity chest’ was given the name of Community Chest Fund. The basic concept was kept at the same level – helping organisations and individuals in need. The first chairperson of the Community Chest Fund was Lady Mamo. Lady Mamo was succeeded by Mrs Buttigieg, during the Presidency of H.E. Doctor Anton Buttigieg. A change in the statute invested the wife of the President of Malta as the Chairperson of the Community Chest Fund. During the Presidency of H.E. Agatha Barbara, the chairperson’s role was the responsibility of the President of the Republic. This change in the statue was maintained under the Presidency of H.E. Doctor Censu Tabone, H.E. Doctor Ugo Mifsud Bonnici, H.E. Prof. Guido de Marco, H.E. Dr Eddie Fenech Adami and H.E. Dr George Abela.
Other chairpersons were Mrs Maryrose Hyzler between 1981 and 1982, wife of the President ad iterim Doctor Albert Hyzler and Paul Xuereb, Acting President, who was chairperson between 1987 and 1989.
As time went by, the Community Chest Fund was given the name as we know it today – The Malta Community Chest Fund.
The everyday running of the Malta Community Chest Fund is administered by Mr Edgar Preca. He also co-ordinates the activities launched and chairs the respective committees that are setup for this aim.
Following the setting up of the Malta Community Chest Fund as a foundation, the structure of the Foundation now is made up of three boards:
- A Supervisory Board which will be overlooking all the guidelines through which the Malta Community Chest Fund should be operating, and where these will eventually lead
- An Administrative Board, which will be responsible for implementing the requests of the Supervisory Board
- A Consultative Board
During the launch of the Malta Community Chest Fund as a foundation, Her Excellency Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca said that the Presidency is committed to continue working as much as possible so that it will continue to be there for financial support and it will also continue serving as the shoulder that many people seek when they encounter health or other problems such as poverty.
The Malta Community Chest Fund operates from Valletta, where it has a small number of employees together with a team of dedicated volunteers. A team of professionals has also been put together. This team is made up of a psychologist, a family therapist and a social worker. The main task of this team of professionals is to oversee the cases and to also make sure that the help given is over and above what would be requested, especially because the cases presented to the MCCF would be sometimes be a conseguence of something of greater stature.
In May 2014, the Malta Community Chest Fund opened its first office Gozo, which was gently provided by the Bishop of Gozo Mgr Mario Grech. In November of the same year, the MCCF in Gozo moved to its new and current office. This was made possible thanks to Michael Grech and his family who generously donated these offices to the MCCF for the next 20 years, at no cost. The Gozo office is being instrumental in facilitating the provision of the services of the MCCF to the Gozitan community, since prior to the opening of the Gozo Office, Gozitans had to commute between Gozo and Malta to reach the Malta Community Chest Fund.
The Malta Community Chest Fund helps a vast range of people throughout the year. The major amount of euros goes towards Chemotherapy and Specialised medicine which would not be part of the list of medicines given through state aid. This type of help is usually given following a recommendation by specialists at Mater Dei and after the case is discussed internally.
The Malta Community Chest Fund also supports (financially), the family members who accompany their relative abroad for further treatment. This consists of airline ticket fares, transport, food and accommodation.
Other support given is through the provision of medical equipment such as, acquiring of mobility aids (including wheelchairs), motorised beds, special mattresses, vehicle modification for persons with special needs etc etc. In such cases, the Malta Community Chest Fund works hand in hand with the National Commission for Persons with Disability (KNPD) so that the persons are given a holistic service.
The Malta Community Chest Funds also helps out socially by providing white goods, vouchers for food and by also helping students financially to help them further their studies.
Apart from all of this, the Malta Community Chest Fund also helps NGOs through a system of fund applications for social or infrastructural projects.