Jeff Kennett hands the reins of beyondblue to Julia Gillard
- Former Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, has been named the new Chair of beyondblue and will take over from Jeff Kennett, at the end of June.
- Kennett founded beyondblue in 2000 and has led the organisation with energy and commitment for 17 years as it became a world leader in raising awareness of depression, anxiety and suicide prevention.
- “I’ll miss it, but I’ll miss it less knowing that in Julia’s hands the organisation will go from strength to strength,” Kennett said.
Treasurer Makes Housing a Budget Priority
- Housing affordability is set to be a priority for the upcoming federal budget according to a speech made by Treasurer Scott Morrison which has been welcomed by the social sector.
- In key pre-budget address Morrison told the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) on Monday that there were “few more important public policy issues than housing” but he warned there was no “silver bullet” to fix the issue.
- He used his speech to lay out Australia’s housing affordability problems and said the housing market was part of a continuum “ranging from homeowners, to renters, to social and affordable housing, and regrettably homelessness.”
Victorian charity sector worth $26.3 billion
- Charities from Victoria received more than $26.3 billion in income according to a new report from the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC).
- The report found that Victorian charities employ over 271 600 people, and around 473 000 people from the state volunteer.
- ACNC Commissioner Susan Pascoe said the report was evidence of the immense contribution of Victoria’s charities.
Bringing Corporate Volunteers into the Aged Care Space
- Not-for-profit aged care provider, Royal Freemasons’ Benevolent Institution (RFBI), has invited employees from some of Australia’s leading companies to participate in its corporate volunteer week, formulated by its CEO Frank Price.
- “I think the aged care industry has copped a bad rap in the press inappropriately and I think that may be a contributor to why corporate volunteering is perhaps overlooked in aged care facilities. I feel that it is not as emotional as volunteering with children for example” said Price.
- He said the initiative was designed to give corporate partners an opportunity to experience residential aged care “the RFBI way”, with more than 30 people from the business community spending a day with residents and participating in village activities.
NAB Foundation Grants to Include Start-Ups and Social Enterprises
- The NAB Foundation has extended its annual not-for-profit grants program worth $1.2 million to include purpose-driven start-ups and for-profit social enterprises for the first time.
- NAB’s general manager of corporate responsibility, Jodi Geddes, said that the move to include social enterprises and the longer, three-year period for investment would help make sure the funds invested have maximum impact.
- Since the foundation was established in 2008, $9.2 million has been invested into 25 not-for-profit organisations supporting positive social change in communities across Australia.
Corporate Brings STEM Program to Disadvantaged Students
- Social Ventures Australia (SVA) has partnered with Samsung to create the STEM Learning Hub, a new initiative designed to boost science, technology, engineering and maths learning in schools with the greatest need.
- The hub is the latest part of SVA’s broader Bright Spots Schools Connection program, which supports school leaders in high-performing but disadvantaged schools to improve the outcomes of their students with a view to spread those learnings across the education system.
- It’s expected as many as 75 per cent of occupations will require STEM skills and knowledge.
Thrive launches in NSW
- Thrive will offer microfinance loans and business support services to refugees, ultimately giving them business and banking credentials and records which they can then use to apply for commercial loans.
- Thrive Chairman and co-founder John Curtis said Thrive would fill a gap in the market for providing both financial and business mentoring support to refugees.
- Thrive has partnered with Westpac which has provided $2 million to be used for microfinance loans and a Chief Operating Officer to help establish Thrive as a stand-alone entity by developing all elements of its operations from credit policies to loan documents.