A Commonwealth Bank executive was recognised for her unwavering commitment to improving the lives of Australia's most marginalised teenage girls at the Financial Executive Women 2017 Leadership Conference in Sydney yesterday.
CommInsure head of business delivery, superannuation and investments, Kate Webber, was presented with the 2017 Positive Progression of Women Award for her volunteer work and mentorship in helping vulnerable young women turn their lives around.
"In addition to her very demanding, full-time role in the banking sector, she is an unsung hero who has gone above and beyond her volunteer role... Her mentee had complex issues and Kate has continued to support her for nine years now," FEW managing director Judith Beck said.
"Given that 41% of these young women have attempted suicide or regularly self-harm, there is not a doubt in my mind that this year's recipient has saved her mentee's life and has given her the tools to build a better future for herself and her children."
Webber personally paid for her mentee's children to attend day care while their mother received vocational education and, in place of receiving wedding gifts, she asked guests to donate to the Sister2sister Foundation which she chairs. Webber led the strategic direction of the foundation including its national roll-out to Victoria and additional job-ready and financial literacy programs.
"This will significantly increase the number of beneficiaries we can reach, as well as offering ongoing long-term support for the hundreds of mentee alumni. Kate is a remarkable woman whose commitment to the Australian community is nothing short of inspirational," Beck said.
In receiving the award, Webber said: "I love the fact that FEW supports SISTER2sister, it's a beautiful alignment... The thing that is most meaningful about mentoring is that you think you're making a difference in their lives but the difference they make in your life is off the chart. I would encourage everyone to embrace advocating for that reason for other people whenever and wherever possible."
Financial Standard is the official media partner of the Financial Executive Women 2017 Leadership Conference.