WWF calls on government to prioritise land protection


A NEW report by Worldwide Fund for Nature-Australia reveals the environmental letdowns that have resulted from Australia’s past inabilities to meet land protection targets.  This report comes in time for a new landmark pact to protect at least 30 percent of the planet’s land and oceans by 2030, finalised during the fifteenth United Nations Climate Change Conference (Cop 15) this month.    Whilst Australia has agreed to the target and publicly committed to a ‘combined’ 30 percent of domestic land and ocean protection by 2030, WWF-Australia’s chief conservative officer, Rachel Lowry, expects more.  “The Australian Government should commit to a global…

Career women go online as role models for young girls


WOMEN all around the world from different careers and backgrounds are posting photos of themselves as young girls and reflecting on their dreams, aspirations and doubts at that age. Their efforts are part of the #ThisLittleGirlIsMe initiative by international charity Inspiring Girls.  Founder and Chair of Inspiring Girls International, Miriam González Durántez, recognised how important female role models are in breaking down gender stereotypes. She founded the organisation to make it easy for young girls to access female role models, allowing them to see what they can be. “Inspiring Girls is dedicated to raising the aspirations of young girls around…

Stand in solidarity with men affected by prostate cancer this September


PROSTATE Cancer claims the lives of nine men every day and is the most common cancer amongst Australian men. Despite the pervasive nature of this disease, many suffer in silence, leading to an increased likelihood of depression and anxiety as a result of their diagnosis. Seventy -two per cent of men diagnosed will not reach out for mental health support. Throughout the month of September, the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia will raise funds for support services and research. The Long Run is a fundraising initiative calling on the community to walk, run or wheel 72km in solidarity with men…

Equal access to sport is a significant need


WHILST the Paralympics has come to a close, all ability opportunities to compete and be successful in sport is ongoing at Blind Sports and Recreation Victoria (BSRV). The non-profit organisation encourages meaningful inclusivity by tailoring sports and recreation programs for the likes of blind and vision-impaired Victorians.  CEO and president of Blind Sports Victoria, Maurice Gleeson believes diversity in sport needs to be substantial. “Often people will create sport or recreation programs that offer inclusivity but not in a meaningful way,” he said.  “By meaningful participation, I mean adapting the activity where possible, to involve the person who is blind…

Australia’s National Plan to re-open does not involve kids


AUSTRALIAN parents want their kids vaccinated and back at school, according to a national poll by UNICEF. The results, released on August 11, 2021, found parents were overwhelmingly concerned about the academic effects of extended periods in lockdown. Learning loss was a ‘major concern’ for 63 per cent of parents, with more than one in four anxious their child would remain intellectually behind when school returned. UNICEF Australia CEO, Mr Tony Stuart said it was necessary to include parents in the debate about sending kids back to school. “To date, much of the debate on when students will return to…

Put the environment first and take the plastic pledge


PROTECTING the precious biodiversity of Australia and empowering a generation of eco-conscious Australians is the mission of Keep Australia Beautiful Week. Over the week of 16-22 August, Australians should pledge to ditch plastic items. Choose a plastic item to give up, such as coffee cups or drink bottles. Each year one billion coffee cups end up on the rubbish heap. Much of the plastic that ends up in nature can take up to 500 years to decompose and harms animals that ingest it. Research and project coordinator at Keep Australia Beautiful Samuel Lawson advocates for people’s influence on preserving biodiversity.…

The Healing Foundation: What’s your role on National Sorry Day


THE Healing Foundation is calling on all Australians to ask what they can do to contribute to the healing of the nation, as we come together to commemorate National Sorry Day. On 26 May each year we acknowledge Sorry Day to mark the anniversary of the tabling of the Bringing Them Home report into the Australian Parliament in 1997. The report detailed the history of the forced removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, under laws enacted by Australian governments. The Healing Foundation Chair Professor Steve Larkin said the Bringing Them Home report gave voice to…

Deadly new surge in South Asia threatens to reverse global gains against the COVID-19 pandemic and have disproportionate impact on children


Statement by George Laryea-Adjei, UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia KATHMANDU, 4 May 2021 – “The scenes we are witnessing in South Asia are unlike anything our region has seen before. Family members of patients are pleading for help as the region reels under an acute shortage of medical-grade oxygen. Exhausted health workers are being pushed to the brink of collapse. We are faced with a real possibility that our health systems will be strained to a breaking point – leading to even more loss of life. “Urgent action and steadfast leadership are indispensable to stop the catastrophe. Governments must do…

Older women lost in housing


They call themselves OWLS. Despite the fact that women over fifty-five are the fastest growing cohort of people facing homelessness in Australia, ‘Older Women Lost in Housing’ are neglected in discussions of housing insecurity in this country. Older women facing homelessness are often described as ‘invisible’. Fifty per cent of women approaching retirement age in Australia have a superannuation balance of $50,000 or less, compared with thirty-three per cent of men. Older women in Australia face a multitude of issues including housing stress, insecurity and homelessness that directly stem from lifelong structural gender disadvantage including superannuation and ageism in the…

Beerstronomy gives star lovers a chance to taste the cosmos


Melbournians will finally be given a chance to taste the cosmos as The Grape & Grain, one of the city’s friendliest bottleshops and pubs, hosts a fundraising trivia night for the Astronomical Society of Victoria and their Pathway to the Planets Program, which aims to provide access for people living with a disability to experience astronomy, on Wednesday, 21 April. ASV Event Coordinator, Mark Iscaro, said the Karma Keg is perfect for beerstronomers – people who are passionate about local craft beer and the wonders of the night sky. “A lot of people I know who drink craft beer are…

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