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Engagement & Opportunity

Tasmanian community receives $1M to tackle complex social issues

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The coastal city of Burnie in North-West Tasmania has been selected to receive up to $1 million in funding through an initiative to support a new approach to tackling some of our country’s toughest and most complex social problems.

The Burnie City Council’s Burnie Works program was chosen from a shortlist of 11 communities around Australia as part of The Search, an initiative convened by The Centre for Social Impact that aims to develop the capacity of communities in the early stages of implementing a collective impact framework.

An eminent panel of international judges reviewed the shortlisted communities in terms of their community engagement, outcomes focus, leadership and possibility of success.

The Burnie Works program is applying the collective impact framework to tackle worklessness caused by entrenched social disadvantage and poor educational attainment. The area has one of the highest rates of youth unemployment in Australia.

Leaders from industry, government and community have come together to focus on improving the engagement of all young people in education and their transition to employment.

According to the Centre for Social Impact, Burnie’s application for The Search funding stood out particularly in regards to the way their community program has engaged residents and people with lived experience in all parts of the change process.

The Search is supported by a Catalysing Group, which includes Westpac Foundation, Results Leadership Group (Australia and USA), Social Solutions Group (USA), Blackbaud Pacific, Social Ventures Australia, Australian Communities Foundation and the Centre for Social Impact. For further information about the Centre for Social Impact, visit the CSI website.

Source:Centre for Social Impact media release, 18 March 2015; The Advocate (online), 19 March 2015.