HomeArchive by category "Blog"



A community-centred approach is not business as usual – are we ready?

posted by Leigh Stewart, 20 Apr 2017

Deeply listening and understanding. Doing with, not for. Enabling communities to create their own change. That’s what ‘good’ community development is meant to be about. Yet when it does happen, there’s no linkage to inform social policy, planning and service delivery – the very systems that can scale social change in Australia are often deeply …read more


Why impact-led thinking should be part of every NFP’s DNA

posted by Leigh Stewart, 23 Mar 2017

A successful business requires a solid business plan, a watchful eye on the bottom line and radar for opportunities. In the non-profit sector, social change is our currency – but how do we measure up when it comes to tracking performance? To date, many social purpose organisations have measured success on meeting specific project goals …read more


United Way Australia announces new CEO

posted by Janita Suter, 10 Mar 2017

United Way Australia is pleased to welcome a new CEO, Clayton Noble. Clayton has an extensive career in the public and private sectors, beginning as an Air Force Officer before moving to executives roles with companies including Fuji Xerox, Dell, BAX Global and Coles Myer. He brings strong commercial and operational capabilities, having lead diverse …read more


Innovation in unemployment: Are we setting ourselves up for failure?

posted by Janita Suter, 09 Feb 2017

Someone needs to say it, is what I keep hearing. We in the social purpose sector and government, look to be scrambling for ideas to address unemployment in Australia. But the answers exist already. Are we not learning? There is $96.1 million available through the government’s Try, Test and Learn Fund to ‘trial new or …read more


How to know if Collective Impact is the right approach for you in 2017

posted by Janita Suter, 05 Feb 2017

Complexity. It underlies many social issues in Australia. It’s why community dynamics sometimes suddenly shift, funding opportunities open or close, government policy changes, and community leaders emerge. It’s behind the many twists and turns that minimise the effectiveness of traditional programs and services dealing with complex social issues. And it’s why there’s growing momentum in …read more


Community Conversations: WHAT’S ALL THE TALK ABOUT?

posted by Leigh Stewart, 17 Jan 2017

It’s increasingly clear that ending the cycle of disadvantage in Australia needs genuine engagement from communities. But there’s no doubt really listening to aspirations and challenges through the community’s eyes, and building and maintaining the momentum to leverage community skills and solutions can be deeply challenging in postcodes with complex social needs. Here we share …read more

The Hive

Collective Impact: Insights from The Hive Mt Druitt

posted by Leigh Stewart, 01 Dec 2016

In August 2014 United Way Australia’s David Lilley began scoping a Collective Impact initiative in Mt Druitt, Western Sydney. Within the Mt Druitt postcode (2770), around one in three children still start school ‘developmentally vulnerable’, despite decades of investment and hundreds of services operating within the region. The Hive is the resulting Collective Impact initiative, …read more


The 4 P’s driving innovation in employee engagement

posted by Leigh Stewart, 16 Nov 2016

Passionate, Personal, Purposeful Partnerships With disengaged staff costing Australian businesses $33 billion annually, the case for businesses to invest in dedicated employee engagement programs is clear.   Last week in Sydney, United Way Australia brought together industry leaders to share their thoughts on how to better support employee engagement for the good of the company, …read more


Philanthropy is Not Future Ready, But These 4 Steps will Help Turn the Corner

posted by Janita Suter, 27 Sep 2016

Despite decades of investment, good will and effort by Australia’s philanthropic sector, it surprised few attendees of the Philanthropy Australia conference last week that philanthropy is not future ready. To really move beyond ‘tinkering around the edges’ of complex social issues in Australia, the sector must embrace the reality that we – philanthropy, communities, business, government …read more


Ending ‘developmental vulnerability’ for children is everyone’s business, but how do we build effective collaboration to tackle this?

posted by Janita Suter, 10 Mar 2016

Last week the government released its latest Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) results, a mixed bag underneath the same headline statistic as the previous census 3 years ago – 22% of Australian children still start school ‘developmentally vulnerable’.  While there were very slight improvements in language and cognitive skills, and communication skills and general knowledge, …read more


Critical Questions About Place Based Solutions for Disadvantaged Communities

posted by United Way, 25 Aug 2014

Let’s ask the right questions about place based solutions for disadvantaged communities This is a summarised version of a keynote speech Doug Taylor, CEO of United Way Australia, gave at a Conference in Sydney on ‘Place Based Solutions’ on Tuesday 26th August, 2014. You can access the full version via the link at right Criterion …read more


Seven Principles of Impact Reporting

posted by United Way, 01 Jul 2014

The Community Impact Manager for United Way Australia, Jenny Riley, offers seven principles of impact reporting as she reflects on designing and writing United Way Australia’s first Community Impact Annual Report. In putting together United Way Australia’s first Annual Community Impact Report, we had a blank slate and the opportunity to apply some of the …read more


Doubling our Investment to Help Kids Read

posted by United Way, 18 Jun 2014

Doug Taylor, CEO reflects on Doubling our Investment to Help Kids Read. Many of our generation, especially in the big capitals such as Sydney – have been able to ride the property boom to more than double their investment. Very often the latest trend or data dominates the daily news and even many a dinner conversation. Let’s …read more


Let’s remember that a backbone has multiple parts.

posted by United Way, 24 Feb 2014

  Doug Taylor, CEO and Jenny Riley, Head of Community Impact from United Way Australia will be presenting on mobilisation at the Collective Impact Conference. Here, Jenny Riley comments on an emerging distributed backbone model.   Did you know your backbone, also known as a vertebral column, is made up of usually 24 vertebrae? However when discussed in …read more


Towards Collective Impact

posted by United Way, 20 Feb 2014

Reflections on ‘Towards Collective Impact’ by Jenny Riley, our Community Impact Manager. Shared measurement requires us to each understand each other, after two days at the Progressing Social Outcomes Measurement I am hopeful because the discourse is getting stronger and we are getting better at asking better questions i.e.  is what we are doing making …read more


Shared measurement – the way to get us all measuring?

posted by United Way, 11 Feb 2014

United Way is pleased to be nominated for the Impact Measurement Awards, presented by SIMNA at the ‘Progressing Social Outcomes Measurement’  conference. Jenny Riley – our Community Impact Manager – comments below on shared measurement as a way towards better outcomes.   Someone said to me the other day that measurement was just too hard, that …read more


The “One Day” Video

posted by Geoff, 09 Feb 2014

Understanding why we focus on Read Learn Succeed.


Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library & Rotary – helping kids in Noble Park

posted by United Way, 14 Jan 2014

  Dolly Parton’s aim with the Imagination Library is simple: to improve early childhood literacy for children by giving them a free, high-quality, age-appropriate book each month from birth to age five. As a little girl, Dolly’s dream was to be a writer and singer. Her strong belief is that the seeds of dreams are …read more


Why funders need to get out of their swimming lanes – the benefits of Collective Impact

posted by United Way, 08 Jan 2014

There’s something inherently appealing and logical about using our respective assets and capabilities to work together to achieve a common goal and it’s most evident in our community when we face a crisis or natural disaster. Somehow on those occasions the social sector is able to shift from running our own individual races in swim …read more

The Age Article Snipped

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is helping to make a world of difference!

posted by United Way, 18 Nov 2013

Earlier in 2013 United Way launched its early literacy initiative, which incorporates Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library – a monthly free book program for children aged 0-5 years, at risk of low-literacy!Kayla is one of 171 children living in Doveton and Eumemmering, VIC, already participating in our program. During a recent interview with a journalist from The Age in …read more

SMH Artlice Snipped

Reading is becoming a family affair – with the help of Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

posted by United Way, 18 Nov 2013

For the Hobson family, reading is becoming a family affair. Both Emma, aged 4, and Samuel, just a baby, are already benefiting from the free monthly books provided as part of the Imagination Library. Their 7 year old sister Lily, also enjoys reading their new books to them. The Hobson children are two of the 850 …read more


Literacy rates affecting workers’ competence, with early childhood reading key

posted by United Way, 05 Nov 2013

As reported on ABC World Today, and also on 7 News website, yesterday Australian companies are reporting an alarming deterioration in levels of worker literacy and numeracy. In a survey of more than 500 employers by the Australian Industry Group, 93 per cent of respondents said their employees’ poor literacy was affecting their business and …read more


CEO United Way Worldwide interview with Fran Kelly – ABC Radio Breakfast

posted by United Way, 16 Oct 2013

During his recent visit to Australia, Brian Gallagher, CEO United Way Worldwide, was interviewed by Fran Kelly – ABC Radio Breakfast. During this interview Brian provided some insight in to our work globally, the challenges of dealing with the social issues of today and on a ‘new way to do business’ – in particular how engaging across …read more


Deloitte CEO champions role of business in driving significant social change

posted by United Way, 16 Oct 2013

Barry Salzberg, Global CEO of Deloitte and Chairman of United Way Worldwide, recently spoke at a United Way Australia Corporate Leader breakfast hosted by Colliers International.   Business has the opportunity to drive significant social change both through innovation and professional volunteering, Deloitte CEO Barry Salzburg said recently at the United Way Breakfast Forum. “Society …read more


CoAPAC Community Impact Summit calls for Cross-Sectoral & Transnational Collaboration

posted by United Way, 08 Oct 2013

United Way was the proud host the 2013 Asia Pacific Corporate Community Impact Summit in Sydney recently. To open the Summit leaders from business, government and the not for profit sectors highlighted the role of cross-sectoral and transnational collaboration in advancing community development to an audience of over 100 Corporate representatives. As reported by ProBono Australia, Brian Gallagher, CEO of …read more


Australian Corporations opportunity to be more active citizens in the Asian Century

posted by United Way, 05 Sep 2013

The Australian Government’s Australia in the Asian Century White Paper has documented what many of our most forward thinking leaders have been writing and talking about for decades; Australia’s future is in its backyard and not far across the seas with our traditional partners of England and the United States. Business leaders have certainly led …read more


Mobilising people to support Collective Impact

posted by United Way, 04 Sep 2013

  Doug Taylor, CEO – United Way Australia, recently presented at the 2013 Volunteering Australia National Conference. Below is an edited version of his presentation – The new frontier of volunteering- mobilising people to support Collective Impact.   My first job out of University was as a Residential Care Worker for people who had previously been homeless. It …read more


Why doesn’t Generation X join organisations committed to public service?

posted by United Way, 14 Aug 2013

Across the world these ancient institutions are dying on the vine and we sit at home surfing the net or watching TV. Okay – perhaps that’s a little unfair – many of us are actually quite busy with both partners working long hours and loads of time spent running children to their next extra curricula …read more


Achieving impact by collaboration

posted by United Way, 02 Jul 2013

Doug Taylor, United Way Australia CEO recently presented on Achieving Impact by Collaboration at the 3 Pillars 8th Annual Givewell Not-for-Profit Strategy Series: Social Impact & Outcomes Forum. This forum, which also involved Luke Branagan, Executive Manager, MLC Community Foundation, Sandy Blackburn-Wright, Head of Social Innovation, Westpac  and Bill Petch, CEO, Leukaemia Foundation, focused on the opportunity for …read more


Lessons from the IGNITE Volunteering 2013 Conference

posted by United Way, 25 Jun 2013

In the below Lyndsey McKee, Corporate Partnerships Manager shares the learnings from her recently facilitated “Consult & Collaborate” session at the IGNITE volunteering conference in Sydney. Last week I got the opportunity to present at the 2013 IGNITE Volunteering Conference.  I was asked to host a workshop on corporate volunteering, aligned to the theme “Consult and Collaborate.” …read more


From mulching to mentoring: the journey of corporate volunteering

posted by United Way, 15 May 2013

National Volunteering Week takes place from 13-17 May and highlights the contribution Australians make to the community. Lyndsey McKee from United Way, one of ING DIRECT’s community partners, talks about the impact made by corporate volunteers and the growing trend for drawing upon specialist skills to make a difference. When United Way first started organising …read more


5 Strategies to Transform Your Corporate Volunteering Program

posted by United Way, 15 May 2013

In conjunction with National Volunteering week this week Doug Taylor, CEO – United Way Australia, writes here about 5 strategies corporations from across the world have successfully used to transform their volunteer programs. I’m lucky enough to be able to have some fairly frank conversations with corporate leaders about their volunteer programs. While most of them would suggest …read more


‘Doing Better at Doing Good’ – Our Community Impact Report Launch Review

posted by United Way, 07 May 2013

United Way Australia along with Centre for Social Impact’s Director Andrew Young launched United Way Australia’s first Community Impact Report : ‘Collaborating for change: Our Journey so far’ at UBS’s Sydney office last Thursday to an audience of over 40 participants from the corporate, trust and foundations, government and community sectors. “In the last 20 …read more


Impact Measurement; a big waste of time?

posted by United Way, 16 Apr 2013

Measurement is the new black in the social and philanthropic sectors. These sectors are abuzz with research papers, consultancies and conferences all rightly dedicated to doing better at ascertaining and quantifying social impact. At United Way we strongly support these endeavours and have been global innovators in introducing outcome measurement as far back as the …read more


Resurrecting Howard to Strengthen Business Community Partnerships

posted by United Way, 15 Apr 2013

As posted recently on ProBono this Opinion piece by Doug Taylor explores the potential of an Abbott Government’s Business Community Partnership group and what a new agenda that deepens and broadens business and community partnerships could achieve. To simply replicate the agenda of John Howard’s Corporate Community Partnerships initiative with its focus on research papers and …read more


True Champions aren’t just made in gyms

posted by United Way, 27 Mar 2013

When most people think of champions, they think of athletes, local heroes and sporting stars, but at United Way champions to us are the dedicated individuals, working within our corporate partners, who go are committed to making a positive impact in the community. The champions we know manage to do their 9-5 jobs as well …read more


Why business leaders should get out more; lessons from the outer suburbs

posted by United Way, 25 Mar 2013

With all of the shenanigans that have been going on in Canberra in recent times you could easily be excused for ‘switching off’ at the mere mention of any of our political leaders. This is totally understandable but also a shame because sometimes we can throw the baby out with the bathwater. Take for example …read more


Are We Creating a Philanthropic Monoculture?

posted by United Way, 20 Mar 2013

As recently posted by Philanthropy Australia, our CEO Doug Taylor looks to explore the question “Is philanthropy in Australia creating a mono-cultural sector that unintentionally excludes others who may genuinely want to ‘give back’?” I have thought for a while that philanthropy in Australia is all a bit too nice and virtuous. If you look at the Philanthropic …read more


Taking our first steps towards helping kids ReadLearnSucceed

posted by United Way, 19 Mar 2013

Last Thursday the first Australian child signed up to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library; the creation of country music sensation, Dolly Parton, and the cornerstone for United Way Australia’s early literacy strategy, ReadLearnSucceed. Charlie was one of eight children from Acacia Ridge (about 25km from the Brisbane CBD) who signed up for the program on the day.  This small, …read more


Creating impact through volunteering – our Corporate Connect® journey: part 5

posted by United Way, 06 Mar 2013

In this fifth blog on corporate volunteering, we discuss the impact the last ten years of our unskilled team volunteering program has had on ourselves, United Way Australia, and how we have used this to deepen our engagement with our corporate partners, their employees and our communities, to create greater impact for all these stakeholders. …read more


Creating impact through volunteering – our Corporate Connect® journey: part 4

posted by United Way, 04 Mar 2013

When United Way first started organising corporate team volunteering projects back in 2003 it was about showing workplace giving donors the work our community partners were doing and helping them in other ways through our unskilled team volunteering program. This unskilled team volunteering program has grown to support over 60 community partners across Australia in 2012. …read more


Creating impact through volunteering – our Corporate Connect® journey: part 3

posted by United Way, 27 Feb 2013

In this third blog reflecting on the impact of ten years of United Way’s Corporate Connect team volunteering, we examine the impact for the businesses supporting their employees to volunteer. With another 195 Corporate Connect team volunteering projects succesfully completed in 2012 we were keen to understand the impact of this program for the businesses …read more


Partners for Impact – realising the knowledge-sharing benefits of mentoring

posted by United Way, 25 Feb 2013

Many corporate leaders feel that having achieved a level of success in their career, there is a strong desire to give back, to contribute to the growth and enrichment of their corporation and their community, but don’t know exactly where to start.  Mentoring programs come in a range of shapes and sizes and are a …read more


Strategic Volunteering in action – an update from United Way’s Income Coalition

posted by United Way, 25 Feb 2013

What happens when you challenge four school Principals, six senior corporate executives and two Department of Education representatives to increase the number of students who finish high school and then transition into further education or employment? In 2011, as part of our Community Impact agenda United Way Australia established a coalition of representatives from business, …read more


Creating impact through volunteering – our Corporate Connect® journey : part 2

posted by United Way, 25 Feb 2013

In this series of blogs we share what we’ve learnt about the impact of corporate volunteering on three key stakeholders: employees as volunteers, the businesses that supports their employees to volunteer and our partner community organisations. In the final blog I’ll explore how United Way has responded to increase employee and corporate engagement in community …read more


Creating impact through volunteering – our Corporate Connect® journey : part 1

posted by United Way, 19 Feb 2013

United Way is celebrating the 10th anniversary of our Corporate Connect® team volunteering program this year. Along the way we’ve learnt a few things that we think are worth sharing. In a series of blogs I’ll explore the impact of corporate volunteering on three key stakeholders: employees as volunteers, the businesses that support their employees …read more


UWW: Transforming its role to global social impact in education, income, and health

posted by United Way, 30 Jan 2013

Further to our post last week on the expansion of United Way (UW) in the Asia Pacific region, the article linked below gives you more insight in to the global United Way movement. United Way Worldwide (UWW) is committed to working with international corporations to bring together two powerful elements – that of Business Strategy & Social Impact. UWW …read more


5 key questions corporate leaders are asking about their community program to improve its impact in 2013

posted by United Way, 21 Jan 2013

Drawing on his experience of working locally, in Asia and North America over the last 5 years, Doug Taylor shares with you the most commonly asked questions the best corporate leaders are asking about their community impact programs and suggests them as questions to ask at the start of 2013. Corporate Community Impact is in …read more


Big investment in increasing Asia Pacific Corporate Philanthropy

posted by United Way, 18 Jan 2013

As corporations in Australia are becoming more strategic in how they use their employee engagement and community programs to create social and business outcomes – the conversation is increasingly turning to how this can be leveraged within other markets in the region. A key driver to investment in corporate responsibility is the realisation by business …read more


The importance of corporate volunteering in helping young people transition to work

posted by United Way, 12 Dec 2012

View our recent video of Hayley Tanti, Careers Advisor, Plumpton High School presenting to United Way’s Community Champions Network on the benefits young people find corporate volunteering brings as they begin to transition from school to work. Corporate Volunteering helping young people transition to employment


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