Government housing services are not enough, according to new report


ON January 25, 2022, the Productivity Commission released a report on federal government services, showcasing the increase of rental stress on low-income households. Rental Stress is spending more than 30 per cent of gross household income on rent, as defined by the Commission. The report found three quarters (72.5 per cent) of low-income households would have been susceptible to rental stress at the end of June 2021 without Commonwealth Rental Assistance (CRA). The Productivity Commission is the Australian Government’s principal review and advisory body on microeconomic policy, regulation, and other social and environmental issues. Of this, nearly half of CRA…

Black Saturday recovery funding still available


Twelve years on from the devastating 2009 Victorian bushfires, the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR) is offering another round of funding to support impacted communities as they continue to rebuild, reconnect and recover. Supported by the Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund (VBAF), the funding is available through FRRR’s Grants for Resilience & Wellness (GR&W) program. The grants of up to $20,000 will support not-for-profits and community-based organisations to lead projects that aid recovery and build community resilience. The GR&W program fund initiatives that improve mental health and wellbeing of communities and individuals; enhance wellbeing and resilience of pre-school, primary…

Record investment in epilepsy research made from the Medical Research Future Fund


Fewer seizures, fewer deaths and better quality of life for people living with epilepsy are set to become a reality through the Australian Epilepsy Project which has received $30 million from the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund. The Australian Epilepsy Project (AEP) will provide a national network of community epilepsy hubs which will provide access to world-leading testing to guide the diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy. The project has received the largest single government investment made to epilepsy research in Australia. The AEP will be led by Professor Graeme Jackson, a world-leading neurologist and epilepsy researcher at the Florey…

More than $1.2M in grants awarded to help tackle the Big Dry


The Foundation for Rural Regional Renewal has awarded $1,264,396 in grants to 29 projects that will support communities across the country that are experiencing prolonged rainfall shortages. The funding is through its award-winning grants program, Tackling Tough Times Together (TTTT).The grants will help drought-impacted regions access the resources needed to bring people together, so they can feel connected and supported. These places, like many parts of remote, rural and regional Australia, continue to face the real and persistent challenges caused by Australia’s Big Dry. Despite rainfall across some areas, these extended dry periods and long-term rainfall deficits may continue for some…

Has Impact Investing replaced traditional funding?


The emerging trend of impact investing is being viewed as an alternative funding model as governments both globally and in Australia particularly reduce their overall spending. In order to address the most pressing needs in our society access to private capital is pivotal, and bringing together investors and communities to tackle a myriad of environmental and social issues is pertinent. Much of the problems with traditional philanthropy and government funding is the over dependence which it perpetuates, coercing non-government organisations to, therefore, live on the ‘cliff-edge’ of their finances before it runs dry. Traditional sources of funding are leaving NGOs…

Can Australian NGOs steer interest in ethical investment with ESG


The concept of ESG – Environment, Social and Governance – is slowly garnering interest among conscientious, value-based investors who wish to tie in together their ethics and values alongside a financial benefit. It’s based on a set of standards and premised on three main factors: environment, social, and governance. It also brings to the forefront a range of criteria that measures the overall sustainability of an investment, allowing investors to make purpose-driven decisions, in areas that resonate with their beliefs. Unpacking opportunities in ESG relies on several factors: availability of data, the demand for greater transparency, public awareness, and the…