This week is Anti-Poverty Week across the country. It is an important week to highlight the fact that poverty exists in Australia and it is the cause of so much disadvantage for so many individuals, families and communities. Over the week there has been strong interest from the media on the back of the events and activity happening by many organisations who are seeking an end to poverty. While some people are surprised at the number of people in Australia (over 3million of which 731,000 are children) and Queensland (430,000) living in poverty, it is very evident from people who know it exists, particularly those working in the community, that this problem is very real and having very detrimental impacts on people.
We know that more can and should be done and pressure needs to be continued on all governments to show leadership on this issue to see the matter addressed. Thirty years ago Bob Hawke, the then Prime Minister, stated that by 1990 no child shall live in poverty in Australia. While that was not achieved, it did result in a 30% reduction of the number of children living in poverty. We know that governments have the ability to make policy decisions that can vastly improve the lives of people. Now more than ever we need governments to step up, as a whole, and provide the right foundations so people can live with dignity. Australia has an abundance of wealth and opportunity and it is time there was greater commitment and a constructive approach taken to address this issue.
Interested in Social Enterprise? Join us to learn about the Journey of a social entrepreneur
I invite you to take a couple of hours to take a look at things differently as on Tuesday 31 October Belinda Bell will share with us the 'Journey of a social entrepreneur'.
Belinda is a social entrepreneur with experience in establishing, supporting and growing organisations that bridge the public, private and third sectors; alongside extensive experience in consultancy and within academia. She has set up a number of social ventures herself and has considerable experience working to support entrepreneurs who are scaling their social ventures. Belinda's work is informed by a rigorous evidence base and she continues to contribute to academic research and writing at the University of Cambridge, including the new Master of Studies in Social Innovation.
QCOSS is delighted to be hosting this event and I hope to see you there! Register here.
Upcoming Queensland State Election
QCOSS is currently developing its Election Statement which it does prior to each state election. Through the Election Statement, QCOSS will advocate to the incoming Queensland Government critical priorities and action that support QCOSS’ vision of eliminating poverty and disadvantage.
A critical part of our process is the engagement with you, our members. To make sure we can capture your input this year we have developed a survey that runs through our ideas and importantly seeks yours. Once we have your responses - by Friday 27 October - we will build them into the QCOSS Election Statement and send you the draft document before we release it more broadly. I look foward to your input! You can access the survey here.
QCOSS State Conference 2017 postponement
Many will be aware that we have decided to postpone the QCOSS State Conference until next year. From all accounts workloads are heavy and the time of year is busier than usual. We will be looking to host an event around May and will keep you posted.
Chief Executive Officer
19 October 2017