Thinkers in Residence launch Social Capital Residencies final report

The Don Dunstan Foundation’s Thinkers in Residence program has published a new report on how to build a more purposeful economy for South Australia, with nine key recommendations creating an invaluable roadmap for shaping the future of SA’s social development and economy.

The Social Capital Residencies (SCR) report details how not-for-profit and for-profit organisations can collaborate, with inclusivity the key to building and sustaining a purposeful economy.

“It was my pleasure to act as the Principal Thinker in Residence over these two years and to be joined by an incredible cadre of other Thinkers as we worked together with South Australians to imagine a better future for your State,” says Allyson Hewitt, who is currently Vice-President, Impact, MaRS Discovery District (Toronto, Canada).

“The work of the for-purpose sector has already gained momentum in South Australia, with the establishment of Lot Fourteen and a growing expat community returning to South Australia due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If capitalised on, these natural progressions of the report’s recommendations could continue to grow the Purpose Economy,” Ms Hewitt says.

“We also highlight that larger corporates are essential to championing South Australia as a leader in the Purpose Economy. The road to a purposeful economy must include organisations of all size and stature, including the big four consulting agencies, and other large companies with bases in SA,” says Ms Hewitt.

Chair of the Don Dunstan Foundation, Dr Jane Lomax-Smith, has welcomed the report and says the work of the five Thinkers will be invaluable to the state.

“As all of our Thinkers in Residence programs have done, the Social Capital Residencies report will bring additional thought leadership to South Australia.”

“Our warmest gratitude goes to our former Thinkers for the work they did while in the state, and for producing this informative report,” says Dr Lomax-Smith.

Launched in 2017, the Social Capital Residencies program ran until June 2019 and saw nine visits to the state from five social innovation experts from around the globe. Over the two years, these expert Thinkers met with over 8,000 South Australians through workshops, events and roundtables.

Following the guidance of expert Thinkers, and with SA’s best interest at the forefront of the minds of all stakeholders, SA holds the opportunity to pave the way for national economic development that will see greater outcomes and social returns for the broader community; an economy that is community centred.

The Social Capital Residency’s final report is available here.

Adelaide Zero Project meets monthly housing milestone

Despite the enormous challenges of COVID-19, Adelaide’s homelessness rate is going down with more people housed than coming into rough sleeping each month since June. In July, the Adelaide Zero Project housed 72 people – its highest ever housing rate in a month; previously, the housing rate sat at a median of 12 people before the pandemic.

The Adelaide Zero Project’s monthly housing rate has steadily increased since May – largely due to the collaborative COVID-19 emergency accommodation response for people sleeping rough, which has been led by SA Housing Authority, Neami National, Hutt St Centre, Baptist Care SA and other project partners, in conjunction with the project’s backbone organisation, the Don Dunstan Foundation.

Adelaide Zero Project Co-Chair Louise Miller Frost said the new data was a ‘big step’ towards the project’s target.

“We are seeing an average of 33 people per month entering rough sleeping, so if we can keep up the momentum of housing over 70 people per month we will make real strides towards our target,” Ms Miller Frost said.

“This includes people who are sleeping rough in the city, or who have since moved into temporary shelter – we can then know these people’s names and needs and eventually connect them to support and accommodation.

“The Adelaide Zero Project has shown during COVID-19 that it is possible to coordinate housing and support for people sleeping rough faster than ever before, especially when we all work together.

Louise Miller Frost, Co Chair, Adelaide Zero Project

“Using our collaborative approach, with not for profit services and housing providers working together with SA Housing Authority to secure long-term housing and support for those who had been sleeping rough.

“While we celebrate this milestone now, we are concerned there may be an increase in homelessness in the coming months, as the impacts of COVID-19 and the recession continue to be felt across the community.

“Adelaide Zero Project’s By-Name List and our collaborative approach put us in an ideal position to monitor any increases in rough sleeping in the city and respond both quickly and collectively,” said Ms Miller Frost.

“To successfully help so many people off the street and into a longer-term home is an outstanding achievement,” said the Hon. Michelle Lensink MLC, Minister for Human Services.

“This really shows what can be achieved when the sector works together to achieve a common goal and a lot of hard work has made this outcome possible.

“To continue to achieve these positives outcomes for South Australians, we need to make sure that all parts of the homelessness system are continuing to work together, and this is central to the reforms we are undertaking at the moment,“ said Minister Lensink.

Although 468 people have been housed across the project’s lifetime, there are currently 218 people actively homeless in Adelaide’s inner city, including 117 people sleeping rough.

SALA winner keen to continue artistic impact

Written by Lili Rose.

This year’s winner of the SALA Don Dunstan Foundation Award is inspiring textile artist, Makeda Duong, who says winning the award came as a shock.

‘I was a little bit surprised. I felt like the other two finalists were strong contenders as well,’ Duong said.

The winning piece, Duong’s Mixed Race Sweater, is a layered, intimate piece displaying and examining the questions made to her about her identity and her musings on the complexities of being a mixed race, Vietnamese-Australian woman.

‘It’s partly about how I’m perceived as a mixed race, half Asian person, but there’s also a lot of stuff going on behind it to do with my father’s past coming from Vietnam, a country that suffered a lot of invasion, war and trauma,’ said Duong.

The sweater, which is split evenly displaying the colours of the Australian flag on the front and the South Vietnamese flag on the back, is a manifestation of her own heritage and the curiosity it inspires in other people. 

As part of her exhibition Mixed Race Female, the sweater asks its audience to reflect upon themselves and the powerful social positions in which questions like ‘Where are you from’ and ‘Am I Australian’ come from.

Each of these questions, which make assumptions about identity based on name or appearance, have been asked to Makeda, an experience known to many other people of colour in Australia.

‘Firstly, there’s something about being a person of colour, it’s very visible, it’s a fact that’s right there, the colour of your skin, colour of your eyes, colour of your hair…it sets you apart,’ Duong said.

Additionally, the sweater’s colours comment on the duality in views on communism, comparing the difference between her father’s experience in Vietnam, which led to his migration to Australia, to the ideals of Western youth.

‘I was thinking that a lot of young Western people have this really positive view of communist ideals now, they see it as a positive alternative to capitalism. Whereas, people like my dad, who came from Vietnam, have had oppressive communist rule and see it as a negative thing. This intrigued me and I might be thinking about that in future works,’ said Duong.

Winning the DDF SALA Festival Award hasn’t been the only response Makeda has had for her work. The exhibition has been featured in a number of local publications, further demonstrating the profound impact it’s had on the public.

‘I think it’s made me realise these kinds of works on these topics has really resonated with a lot of people, probably more than I thought it would,’

‘A lot of things that aggravate me tend to make me want to make artwork as a reaction to it.’ Duong said.

The initial inspirations for the sweater began with Duong’s first piece from 2015, the Cursed Boyfriend Sweater, a manifestation of the unhealthy things couples say to each other knitted into a wearable sweater.

Duong plans to save the $1000 prize money to continue creating artwork on topics of mental health, migration, race, and gender.

‘I think it’s emboldened me to make work if I feel I have something to say about it, not feel like I can’t or that it’s a topic that I’m going to be attacked or perceived negatively for,’ said Duong.

With a specialisation in textiles, Duong says she won’t be moving away from the medium any time soon. Instead, she’s considered creating more sculptural works like those currently featured in her exhibition.

Although having a break after this exhibition, Duong will continue to contemplate conceptual avenues, further focusing on ideas of communism and the funding cuts within the arts sector due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mixed Race Female is showing at Nexus Arts Gallery until September 17th.

Congratulations Baroness Louise Casey!

Baroness Louise Casey

Written by Edward McLeish

Queen Elizabeth II has elevated 2017 Don Dunstan Orator Dame Louise Casey to the title of Baroness.

Baroness Louise Casey has been a driving force in ending homelessness and has developed a number of bespoke social policy programmes governments have used globally.

Aside from being an annual Don Dunstan Orator in 2017, Bss Casey challenged the city of Adelaide to solve its homelessness problem – a challenge giving birth to the Don Dunstan Foundation’s Adelaide Zero Project.

Some of Bss Casey’s UK achievements include becoming director of Shelter (1992), head of the Rough Sleepers’ Unit (1999), a director of the Anti-Social Behavioural Unit (2003), head of the Respect Task Force (2005), was the UK’s first Victims Commissioner in 2010 and the director-general of Troubled Families in 2011. In February this year, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson appointed Bss Casey as an adviser to help tackle homelessness.

Bss Casey has consistently delivered brave and innovative solutions to long standing social problems ranging from homelessness to anti-social behaviour to troubled families.

And throughout her illustrious career, Bss Casey has maintained her commitment to the charity sector and has been a driving force in the establishment of the Institute for Global Homelessness (which works with the Adelaide Zero Project), with the aim of delivering an international solution to homelessness across the world.

Previously, Bss Casey was awarded the Companion of the Order of Bath (CB) in the Queen’s birthday honours list, 2008 and made Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the Queen’s birthday honours list, 2016.

The Don Dunstan Foundation congratulates Baroness Louise Carey for her promotion, her leadership and her stellar achievements in reducing homelessness.

SA’s creative thinkers stick together amid pandemic.

Written by Edward McLeish

Socially, culturally, politically and economically, it’s been a tough time for South Australia’s arts industry.

But the state’s COVID-free circumstances would place it better against other states’ creative sectors as it sings, dances, paints and plays its way out of a pandemic.

That’s according to a panel headlined by the Don Dunstan Foundation’s (DDF) first Thinker in Residence Martin Elbourne – as he joined the who’s who of SA’s arts industry for a webinar discussing the pandemic’s impacts on cultural institutions.

Adelaide Fringe CEO and Artistic Director Heather Croall facilitated the discussion – which featured Mr Elbourne, Adelaide UNESCO City of Music Director Beck Pearce, Adelaide Festival Artistic Director Rachel Healy and Art Gallery of South Australia Director Rhana Devenport.

Miss Pearce said the coronavirus had a ‘huge impact’ on creative industries – especially in the form of live music.

‘The main challenges were the restrictions to venues and music businesses,’ she said.

‘In terms of capacities and the ability to present live music, live performances have been hugely impacted.

‘The SA music industry contributes over $375 million – it’s a huge contributor to the economy.’

Attracting audiences to venues to dance to and interpret music has gone to a standstill; the inability for the tourism industry to thrive and lure local audiences to venues has dented SA’s economy.

So SA’s music industry and its crusading musicians face sustainability issues as they are constrained to paths of innovation, according to Miss Pearce.

‘Some musicians implement income via hospitality and teaching, which are industries that have also been impacted,’ she said.

Ms Healy said international workers were a big part of the Adelaide Festival; historically, the festival had attracted companies of up to 100 artists from around the world.

‘It’s a time-limited international arts festival – and in the middle of a pandemic, there are issues in programming,’ she said.

‘We’re seeing a bit of work locked in for the 2021 festival, but the majority of work for 2022; what we can’t fit in 2021 will impact how we program our ‘22 and ’23 years.’

Some of the other issues Ms Healy raised included getting visas for international artists through border control, an unwillingness for artists to travel and quarantine, agencies unwilling to offer insurance for incoming artists, the artists’ running costs mid and post-quarantine, and mental health issues.

‘Bureaucracy and anxiety are the main challenges for artists,’ she said.

‘You have to commit to taking one step at a time and keep going until someone tells you that you can’t keep going; everyone globally is in the same boat.

‘Most arts workers are trying to figure out a situation where they’re not sleeping out of their car.’

Ms Devenport said while the visual artists were doing it tough, it didn’t compare to live performers.

‘I really feel for the live arts; the nature of the live art form is about people being together,’ she said.

‘Without artists, everything disappears.’

To support some struggling visual artists, the Art Gallery of South Australia provided six $10,000 bursaries for artists – not something galleries typically do.

But Ms Devenport said the gallery’s annual appeal had more support than ever.

‘We’ve had lots of people deeply concerned about artists,’ she said.

Although community funding was pleasing for the gallery, Ms Devenport hoped there would be more financial support from the government for Australia’s creative industries.

‘In the UK, The Arts contributes seven per cent to its gross domestic product (GDP), and gets one per cent of government support, whereas Australia’s creative industries contribute 6.4 per cent to its GDP and only gets 0.25 per cent of support,’ she said.

While pandemic-specific challenges have impacted the arts industry, the COVID-19 crisis has provided opportunities for innovation among artists.

Mr Elbourne – who joined the webinar from The UK – has ensured successes in the music industry: booking artists at Glastonbury, co-founding WOMAD Festival and promoting festivals globally.

As the DDF’s first Thinker in Residence (2013), Mr Elbourne has evolved SA’s music industry; he said the residency inspired his career’s path over the past seven years.

One of the recommendations he made in the position was bringing the UNESCO City of Music office to Adelaide – currently headed by Miss Pearce.

Mr Elbourne said there opportunities to thrive included utilising its warm climate and rethinking the positioning of night clubs.

‘We might see the end of Hindley St – that’s the worst street in Australia and it ought to be the best street in Adelaide,’ he said.

‘What I’d like to see is large indoor night clubs moved to the outskirts of the city rather than the CBD – like Amsterdam and its super clubs.

‘The last thing opening up will be those night clubs, when people are at an indoors venue and singing and talking loudly – that’s a big no-no for quite some time.

‘But Adelaide’s climate means even in winter, you can go out and do things.’

Ms Healy said her team had been excited by opportunities for more outdoor festivals.

‘There’s always interesting opportunities to create works in non-traditional spaces that will be safer and create an event opportunity,’ she said.

Other ideas Ms Healy thought would bring masses together in a safe way included drive-in concerts, Perspex barriers separating seats in theatres, contract tracing and patron temperature checks.

Ms Croall said transitioning to digital opportunities (including Zoom plays, livestreaming and NEO Online) would meet the needs of some people unable to attend events for health reasons.

‘We’ve found ways to integrate innovations that we’ve got to roll out in the future,’ she said.

Miss Pearce said online platforms for a concert series would ‘break down accessibility barriers’.

‘It’s an opportunity to develop audiences over time,’ she said.

When it came to whether SA was better or worse placed than other states and countries, Ms Devenport said we were better placed as the majority of our industry’s audiences are local.

‘Last year, we had around a million visitors in a town of 1.3 million,’ she said.

Ms Croall said punters within the SA bubble have an opportunity to “crack in” to save the arts industry.  

‘In other galleries, 70 per cent of tickets come from out of town,’ she said.

“At the Adelaide Fringe this year, we sold 850k tickets, and although there were 30,000 tourists, nearly a million tickets sold with most of them local.’

Moving forward, the panel agreed more government funding to The Arts in SA was vital in its revival, and there was an important story to be told about what creative sectors provide households.

For example, Miss Pearce said music was key for many areas of learning.

“Music teaches literacy, social cohesion, empathy and many other things; music makes society better people and there’s a really important story to be told,’ she said.

Don Dunstan Executive Director Ritchie Hollands closed the webinar by quoting Don Dunstan:

The arts are an all-pervading part of our everyday lives. They intrude on us without our realising it, so subtle is their influence and so unrecognised their presence.

The DDF hosts Art For Good, harnessing opportunities in the arts for South Australians.

This includes the South Australian Living Artists (SALA) Award and the Our Mob Emerging Artist Award.

Previous initiatives have included the Social Change Guide, which offers an overview of Adelaide Fringe Festival events with a social change theme, and the Dunstan Film Club, a quarterly movie event with a strong social justice message at its core.

DDF intern makes a difference!

Interview by Anthony Collebrusco

Jacqueline Anderson is about to finish her final semester at the University of Adelaide, earning a double degree in International Relations and Arts with a major in sociology and minor in international development.

The COVID-19 era is an unusual time to be a university student. In addition to regular assignments, she is writing 2000 words per week for tutorial participation. She is completing an advanced research capstone for her sociology major by studying policy related to school feeding programs that could be implemented in South Australia. On top of that, all work has been fully remote this semester.

And if that weren’t enough, she is also doing essential work for Neami National as part of the Adelaide Zero Project (AZP), helping account for and house the increasing number of people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 era.

Neami National is a Foundation partner and acts as the data custodian for the AZP. Jacqueline is currently employed with Neami as an Operational Support Officer and initially got involved with them by applying for an internship with the Don Dunstan Foundation. For her, it was the legacy of Don Dunstan and the work of the Foundation that led her to apply.

“I’ve known about Don Dunstan my entire life. My family has been enormous fans of him and his legacy, especially in the arts. I didn’t have enormous knowledge of the Adelaide Zero Project, but I knew I couldn’t pass over work with the Don Dunstan Foundation and having that as a learning experience.”

When she first started on AZP, Jacqueline was tasked with data management of the By-Name List, the AZP’s tool for tracking active homelessness in Adelaide.

When an individual is identified as experiencing homelessness, they fill out a survey detailing where and for how long they have been sleeping rough as well as information about their mental and physical health. They are then scored on a complexity scale, which informs their housing needs and support systems to ensure successful tenancy.

Jacqueline is responsible for recording this information as well as participating in housing allocation meetings to help find suitable housing solutions for these individuals.

“People fill out surveys, which I then input into the system. Then, every time they are seen on our outreach rounds, I get a note of that and record what they’re doing, how they’re going, and we build a profile on this person. We are able to use that to look at the overall complexity of our clients and find the most appropriate housing for them.”

This information is invaluable for the AZP’s work, and since it tracks information related to mental health and use of emergency services, it is increasingly relevant to political leaders seeking to resolve the challenge of rough sleeping in Adelaide – a challenge exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis.

The number of actively homeless in Adelaide has increased from 201 in March 2020 to over 350 in April 2020, making outreach and data management more difficult.

“It’s really hard to have contact with everyone when your clients have increased dramatically,” says Anderson. “The team and I are actively working on ways to adapt the data to these changes.”

Despite the challenges, Jacqueline has been impressed with case workers’ ability to maintain constant communication with their clients and the effort to ensure that as many people as possible are housed.

“For us to adapt to getting so many new consumers, it has been stressful, especially for caseworkers. But I think that the passion of ensuring that everyone was safe really united all the AZP agencies.”

This collaborative effort has helped ensure that vulnerable people were supported faster and that many of the people on the By-Name List were temporarily sheltered during the COVID-19 crisis. As the highly dynamic situation begins to settle, Anderson is eager to see the data develop in the coming months, gain better understanding of the impact of AZP’s COVID-19 response and how it may inform future success of the AZP.

Anderson encourages students preparing for an internship to be ready to dive into a project fully. Try to shadow your supervisor, go to meetings, and learn the ins and outs of your work as much as possible. She says, “The benefits of what you can learn will outweigh any fears you may have.”

“Interning for Don Dunstan was one of the best decisions I made. Having the opportunity to work for something that I was incredibly passionate about, while also gaining skills that would increase my employability, resulted in me actually being employed in a position that I would want to do as a career.

“Things can happen that you don’t expect, and it really turned out to be the best possible situation for me.”

Jacqueline Anderson plans to continue her role in not-for-profits and someday hopes to pursue a graduate program.

Dr Jane Lomax-Smith AM appointed as new Chair of the Don Dunstan Foundation

Dr Jane Lomax-Smith

Dr Jane Lomax-Smith AM has been appointed Chair of the Don Dunstan Foundation.

The Foundation was established 20 years ago and brings together research, policy makers and community groups to respond to social needs in South Australia through public events, collaborative projects and research. Supported by the University of Adelaide and Flinders University, the organisation builds on the legacy of the late Don Dunstan, who was first elected as Premier of South Australia 50 years ago this week.

Jane follows the highly successful period of leadership by the Hon. Rev. Dr Lynn Arnold AO, who has completed his term as Chair but remains on the Board.

Executive Director of the Foundation, Ritchie Hollands, said “Lynn’s leadership over the past ten years has been tremendous, and has seen both the breadth and depth of the Foundation’s influence grow significantly.

“We are thrilled to have Jane driving our thought leadership and social justice agendas – both now in these uncertain COVID-19 times, and beyond,” Ritchie said.

Jane is a consultant pathologist who has been involved in public life through local and state government for over 20 years. She has been an Adelaide City Councillor, Lord Mayor of Adelaide, a member of the House of Assembly and a State Minister for Education and Tourism. Jane has held several Board positions and has most recently been the Chair of the Board of the South Australian Museum and Presiding Member of the Teachers Registration Board SA.

Jane said her migration as a young professional from London to South Australia was inspired by Don Dunstan’s progressive agenda and international reputation.

“I feel fortunate to have known him in the last twenty years of his life and was honoured to have been on the Foundation’s Inaugural Board.

“It will be a privilege now, to promote Don’s legacy by serving as Chair of the Board, and I look forward to supporting social and economic innovation through the Foundation,” she said.

How to help our partners

Written by Anthony Collebrusco

During this challenging climate, our thoughts are with the partners of the Don Dunstan Foundation’s major projects.

These service providers continue to deliver invaluable services to vulnerable populations in our community, and many have adapted their practices to protect their clients, employees and volunteers.

With many of us in the not-for-profit sector impacted in different ways by COVID-19, some of you may have the capacity to support our very important service providers.

We have made a comprehensive list of partners and their current needs with links to more information about how you can help.

Additionally, some partners are no longer accepting certain types of donated goods. These changes are also noted below.

Whether you are able to offer support, or unable to in these difficult times, the Foundation thanks you for your ongoing commitment to social justice in our state.

AnglicareSA

Donations to Anglicare’s COVID-19 Emergency Appeal can be made here. To limit the spread of COVID-19, AnglicareSA is currently not accepting donated goods from the public, including food, clothing and blankets.

Baptist Care SA

Baptist Care SA provides weekly emergency relief food parcels to people experiencing homelessness. The organisation has created a list of non-perishable food items, including:

  • Canned meat, soup, tinned fruits and vegetables.
  • Cereal and long life milk.
  • Rice.
  • Pasta sauce.
  • Shampoo, conditioner, body wash and deodorant.
  • And much more.

Items can be dropped off during office hours Monday through Friday between 9 am and 5 pm at 11-19 Millers Court (off Wright Street).

Baptist Care SA is also seeking mobile phones (Android not Apple) to help connect those experiencing isolation with their loved ones.

Catherine House Inc.

The current virus threat means clients need more support than ever, and donations can be made here. Volunteer programs have been paused and in-kind goods donations are currently not accepted.

Community Housing LTD

CHL has compiled resources related to COVID-19, state-specific information, and FAQs related to housing and tenancy matters.

Housing Choices South Australia

Housing Choices South Australia has been curating helpful resources on their Facebook page, including a telephone check-in service from the Red Cross and a factsheet for older Australians from COTA SA.

They also shared Action for Happiness’ Meaningful May calendar, featuring daily prompts of positive actions you can take. Print it out and put it on your desk.

Hutt St Centre

Hutt St Centre is accepting food donations, including:

  • Reusable, BPA-free water bottles
  • Muesli bars
  • Long life milk
  • Coffee
  • Sugar
  • Supermarket gift cards

Clothing and household items are not currently being accepted.

Download Hutt St Centre’s COVID-19 wishlist. (PDF)

Junction Australia

Junction Australia’s Facebook page is curating ways to help local not-for-profit organisations.

OARS Community Transitions

OARS Community Transitions’ volunteer recruitment page is still active.

Australian Red Cross

The Australian Red Cross continues to support bushfire relief and helping those in need across Australia. It is still seeking volunteers. Find opportunities close to you on their volunteer page.

Blood and plasma donations remain vital in the fight against COVID-19. Travel and venue restrictions do not prevent people from giving blood, although the Red Cross encourages donors aged 70 and over to stay at home and self-isolate. Learn more about how to give blood and plasma.

The Red Cross created a page dedicated to tips about maintaining your well-being and how to take care of yourself and others in isolation.

The Salvation Army

As COVID–19 continues to impact our communities, The Salvation Army is working hard to continue providing support to those who need it most. Cash donations can be made here. The Salvation Army is not accepting donations of goods currently, so please do not drop unwanted goods outside the shops.

Uniting Communities

As of 1 May, anyone entering an aged care facility for work or to visit loved ones will be required to provide proof of a current flu vaccination. Uniting Communities encourages everyone to get your flu shot as soon as possible.

Vinnies

Vinnies has announced that shops at Hawthorn and Kidman Park have reopened as of 18 May 2020. Vinnies Hawthorn shop at 21 Abbotshall Road accepts quality donations of clothes, bric-a-brac, books and household items. Clean blankets are also being accepted to help those in need of warmth. Social distancing measures are in place and volunteers have proper protection.

Women’s Safety Services SA

The organisation encourages donations to Second Chances SA or the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Secondhand goods are not accepted.

Shelter SA

Shelter SA is involved in weekly Giving Tuesday campaigns. In a recent campaign, they asked for food or cash donations to be made to a list of homelessness service providers. Weekly updates can be found on their enews and Facebook page.

Homelessness to surge in South Australia because of COVID-19

Celeste Villani, City Editor, The City|May 10, 2020

Shelters are bracing for a surge in homelessness in SA in both employed and unemployed people because of the COVID-19 crisis – there’s already been a huge spike in the CBD.

Read the article here …

Dr Guy Turnbull’s report is here

Former Adelaide Specialist Thinker in Residence and award-winning UK social entrepreneur Dr Guy Turnbull is encouraging South Australia to step up and grow its co-operative movement.

Dr Turnbull, recognised for successfully opening co-operatives (or social franchises) abroad, has outlined recommendations as part of his role for the Adelaide Thinkers in Residence program, focused on developing South Australia’s Purpose Economy.

“Adopting new co-operative ways of owning and organising a range of economic activity including health and social care services, is the key to strengthening the local economy.”

“There is no greater way to engage an employee and deliver superior outcomes than to make them an owner of the organisation they work for – this is why the employee ownership and co-operative business models are thriving.”

Dr Guy Turnbull

When people have a stake in an organisation like a co-operative, they deliver a much better quality of care. This makes the business more successful and means that profits can be reinvested in staff development and better care.

The right support ecosystem needs to be in place for more co-operatives and mutuals to form in South Australia. This includes:

Dr Turnbull’s final report from his 2018 residency.
  • Establishing a central voice
  • Having strong connections to the global movement
  • Accessing appropriate social investment finance
  • The availability of bespoke business advice and support
  • A supportive legislative environment

Co-operative and social enterprise business models gain traction when they focus on particular sectors – health, aged care, disability as well as creative industries should be prioritised.

There are already great ideas being brought to the table including; bringing together carer co-operatives with primary and allied health professionals and having multi-stakeholder co-operatives of providers and people with disabilities, families and workers, who as member-owners, are engaged in how care is delivered.

These are examples of potential innovative models where South Australia can show national leadership on engagement and outcomes for transformational social care programs such as the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

“I encourage South Australia to identify and nurture more Social Entrepreneurs as people are what matter most in business, including co-operatives and social enterprises.”

Dr Guy Turnbull

Dr Turnbull’s report: ‘Towards a Co-operative State: Securing the Social and Economic Prosperity of South Australia through Corporate Diversity,’ is available here.

The Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals, State Government, tertiary education, allied professional stakeholders and the private sector are currently working with Dr Turnbull, on contributing to the development of a blueprint for action in Australia’s health and social care sector.

Melina Morrison, CEO of the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM), comments on Dr Guy Turnbull’s final report.