• 12 Jan 2015 11:01 AM | Louise Stokes

    Local community groups throughout Australia have received a bright start to 2015 after being granted funding as part of nib foundation’s sixth annual Community Grants Program.

    The 14 charities will share in $350,000 worth of funding that will support a range of grassroots health programs aimed at young people and carers across the country.

    nib foundation Chairman, Keith Lynch, said the foundation partnered with organisations that deliver practical approaches to meeting the unique health and wellbeing needs of these groups.

    “Healthy communities are the key to improving the lives of Australians now and for future generations, which is why we focus our support on initiatives that deliver real health outcomes for local communities,” Mr Lynch said.

    “Whether it is through expanding current services or introducing new programs that help reduce the gaps in existing services each of these funded projects give young people and carers the opportunity to live healthy, happy lives,” he added.

    Individual program funding ranged from between $2,000 to $50,000. The 2014 beneficiaries and their programs are:
    • Act for Kids: Adapt Learn to be Safe with Emmy, to be a culturally appropriate protective behaviours program for Aboriginal children in Queensland.
    • Ausee: Print and distribute a children’s book for siblings of children with eosinophilic gastrointestinal disorder.
    • Australian Catholic University: Deliver the Healthy Mothers, Healthy Families health education program to mothers of children with disabilities in Victoria and New South Wales.
    • Cooks Hill Surf Life Saving Club: Implement water safety and awareness program to assist Newcastle’s refugee community participate in beach activities.
    • Disabled Surfers Association Australia: Acquire new equipment to support volunteers at the Hunter branch hold surf days for people with a disability.
    • Families Supporting Families Inc: Support the 2015 Carers Café Plus events enabling carers of special needs children in Newcastle to connect with peers, services and information.
    • Good Cycles Limited: Establish Cycle Smart, a bike education and work experience program for disadvantaged youth in Melbourne.
    • Guide Dogs NSW/ACT: Deliver a Mobility Adventures Program for blind and vision-impaired children in Sydney and regional New South Wales.
    • Inclusion Melbourne: Develop a plain English resource to support oral health care for young Victorian people with an intellectual disability.
    • Learning Links: Run Train the Trainer workshops to assist disability providers in the Hunter region to deliver the Parents as Case Co-ordinators program to local families.
    • Men's Resource Centre (Inc): Establish a Positive Mentoring Program to encourage disadvantaged youth in Albany, Western Australia to engage in a healthy active lifestyle.
    • Police Citizens Youth Club NSW Ltd (PCYC): Support the youth training and skills program at PCYC’s Citizens Cafe in Blacktown, New South Wales.
    • Inspire Foundation: Create audio content information resources to improve the mental health of young people with low literacy.
    • Villa Maria Society: Establish a new Young Carers Mentor Program in the Hume region, Victoria.
    More than 450 applications for funding were submitted for the foundation’s community grants program, up 150% on the previous funding round. Mr Lynch said the unprecedented rise in applications was a reflection of the increasingly competitive environment for private sector support.

    “We know that 2014 was a tough year for Australia’s social sector with charities seeing an increase in demand for their services while at the same time Government funding for many programs was diminishing,” Mr Lynch said.

    “The number of applications we received demonstrated the significant demand for funding programs such as our Community Grants program, to help the many wonderful organisations continue their good work for our community,” Mr Lynch said.

    Since its establishment nib foundation has committed more than $12 million in funding to help change the lives of almost 45,000 people who have participated in their partners’ programs.

    More information about nib foundation and partners can be found at

  • 18 Dec 2014 11:10 AM | Louise Stokes
    The Chairman of beyondblue Jeff Kennett today announced that former Prime Minister Julia Gillard has accepted the invitation of the Board of beyondblue to join its Board as a Director.

    The Board ratified Ms Gillard’s appointment at its meeting last Tuesday.

    Mr Kennett said: “We are particularly honoured that Julia Gillard has seen fit to join our organisation as we continue to serve those in the community suffering depression and anxiety and who are at risk of suicide.

    “Julia Gillard will not only bring a great deal of experience to our Board, but importantly the passion for the sector that drove her in government to establish the National Disability Scheme, which if professionally and compassionately introduced could be the most important social reform of the century.

    “For many of those who suffer disability, and their carers, depression can be an ever present condition.

    “Julia Gillard has always been a kindred soul of our work.

    “So much of the success of beyondblue has been that it has received bi-partisan support from politicians and governments since its inception in 2000.

    “Ms Gillard’s appointment only reinforces that bi-partisanship.”

    Ms Gillard said: “As the daughter of a psychiatric nurse, I have always understood the need to talk openly about mental health and respond to those in need. In government, I was proud to extend services to help and treat young people battling depression and other conditions. Like Jeff, I believe the NDIS has great potential to assist those in our community who face the most profound mental health challenges. In my life now, I am delighted to be able to continue to make a contribution in an area I feel so passionately about by joining beyondblue."

    Ms Gillard will attend her first beyondblue Board meeting in February next year.

  • 17 Dec 2014 9:55 AM | Louise Stokes

    Expressions of interest are being sought from NFPs interested in Space29 - the new office space for NFPs in Kensington, South Australia. Total space available is around 115 sqm with possibility for partial or full tenancy. Lease term is for 18 months from January 2015, with options for shared reception, other back office services and fit-out - perfect for new Not for Profits and social enterprises. Ample off-street parking. Further information and enquiries, please email Michael Colmagro ( or call 08 8444 9700.

  • 04 Dec 2014 8:34 AM | Louise Stokes
    The Perth Convention Bureau’s (PCB) 2015 Aspire Awards are now open to individuals involved with not-for-profit associations who can apply for the City of Perth, the City of Mandurah, Giving West Scholarships.

    The aim of the Aspire Program is to assist the individual’s personal and professional development through attendance at a relevant international conference. The funding covers travel, accommodation and registration expenses to the maximum value of the award. The scholarships, funded by PCB under its Aspire Program, are awarded to individuals involved with not-for-profit associations and academics across a variety of industry sectors and designed to assist personal and professional development.

    The selection criteria for applications are now available at with the deadline to receive applications being 31st March 2015. A wide range of assistance and advice is available to help you apply by contacting PCB’s Director Stakeholder Relations, Tracey Cinavas-Prosser on +61 (0)8 9218 2925 or email A free workshop lunch will be hosted on 6th February 2015 at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre; interested parties are welcome to attend.

  • 03 Dec 2014 10:40 AM | Louise Stokes

    the Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI), and the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) in Canada. HRPA is the professional regulatory body and the professional association for HR professionals in Ontario, Canada. It oversees more than 21,000 members in 28 chapters across the province. AHRI is the national association representing HR and people management professionals. It has around 20,000 members from Australia and across the globe.

    HRINZ said the agreement is the first step toward a closer working relationship between the three organisations and that it signals an ongoing commitment to building connections and strengthening the profession through global networks.

    They anticipate the agreement will bring a number of benefits for each organisation in potential areas such as programmes, product and resource sharing across geographies, exchanges and international study tours, joint research and the mutual recognition of professional designations.

    HRINZ Chief Executive, Chris Till said the organisation was “honoured” to be partnering with the Australian and Canadian associations.

    "We truly live in a global village, and as the professional body for human resource practitioners and people managers in New Zealand, it is important that HRINZ has strong, broad and valuable connections and networks worldwide... We are certain that this will have many benefits for our members as well as for the human resources profession as a whole in New Zealand and globally," he said.

    The leaders of HPRA and AHRI echoed his sentiments, with Bill Greenhalgh, HRPA CEO, commenting "we live in an increasingly interconnected world economy. While each country has its unique cultural and legal characteristics, the professionalisation of HR needs exchangeable, valued and credible designations based on a global body of knowledge. The understanding with Australia and New Zealand that we announce reflects this need".

    AHRI CEO Lyn Goodear, added: "In view of the increasing impact of global influences on the economic and business context within which professional associations operate, it makes a great deal of sense for associations of like mind to work in unison to achieve common objectives. Representing the Australian HR profession, I am therefore delighted to be entering into a partnership with our HR counterparts in Canada and New Zealand to explore opportunities and synergies to work in collaboration for our mutual benefit".

  • 03 Dec 2014 9:33 AM | Louise Stokes

    The 2014 AuSAE Leadership Symposium held in Rotorua got some fantastic coverage in the Nov/Dec 2014 issue of meeting newz

    AuSAE thanks the team at meeting newz for their support and we have included a few snap shots of the coverage below.

    Matt Reilly, Michael Stokeo and Martin Svehla about to head down the track on the luge.

  • 03 Dec 2014 9:29 AM | Louise Stokes
    Fourteen winners took home highly coveted awards at last night’s New Zealand Engineering Excellence Awards, held at the Pullman Hotel in Auckland. The Awards, running since 2005, celebrate outstanding leadership, innovation, and excellence in engineering projects, people and practice.

    “It was a great night with such a high calibre of entries. It reminded us again just how well New Zealand’s engineering community deserves its world-leading reputation. The judges certainly had their work cut out for them,” Kieran Devine, interim Chief Executive of IPENZ, says. IPENZ is one of eight partner organisations hosting the awards.

    The 14 winners were selected from a pool of 53 entries, covering everything from earthquake-resistant building design, sewerage, waste and water management, through to electricity supply and safety. There were some excellent examples blending engineering design with New Zealand’s cultural heritage.

    “These are New Zealand’s premier engineering awards,” Panel Judge, Peter Higgs, says.

    “This year’s entries included some outstanding examples of innovation and creativity in engineering projects and practice that are making a huge difference in the lives of countless New Zealanders – from innovations in the management of sewage and wastewater in Christchurch to a world-first in the use of redeveloped earthquake-resistant building technologies.”

    The overall supreme award was given to the team behind the creation of Whangarei’s Te Matau ā Pohe bridge – which is only New Zealand’s second-ever bridge, and the first in 50 years, with a lifting mid-section to enable boats to pass underneath it. The design of the bridge incorporates the traditional Māori fish hook and takes its name from Wiremu Pohe, the Māori chief who greeted the first ever Europeans to visit the region.

    “It was a pleasure to announce McConnell Dowell Constructors Ltd, Transfield Services, Novare Design Ltd, Gaia Engineers Ltd, Knight Architects, Eadon Consulting, Northern Civil Consulting and Whangarei District Council as the joint winners of the Supreme Award for their work on Te Mata ā Pohe. It’s a well-deserved accolade that we hope will also inspire others to continue to integrate excellence in design with New Zealand’s unique cultural identity and ingenuity,” Mr Higgs says.

    The Awards are run by the Institution of Professional Engineers (IPENZ) on behalf of the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA), Electricity Engineers’ Association (EEA), Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand (ACENZ), Civil Contractors New Zealand, Water New Zealand and the New Zealand Council of Engineering Deans and the Cement and Concrete Association of New Zealand (CCANZ).

    More information here:

  • 02 Dec 2014 2:27 PM | Louise Stokes
    For the past two weeks in a row AuSAE has annouced new annual partners for 2015. It is our great pleasure to annouce another one, Conference Innovators, to assist the NFP/ Association sector.

    As New Zealand's leading professional conference organisers (PCO's), Conference Innovators (CI) are considered the best in the events field when it comes to bringing people together successfully. With nearly 20 years of proven experience producing memorable, rewarding, enjoyable events, CI not only does everything a PCO should do, from concept to completion, they do it with style, a sense of fun, and most importantly, INNOVATION!

    We are delighted to have Tracey and his team on board. Contact Tracey Thomas 03 379 0390

  • 02 Dec 2014 12:59 PM | Louise Stokes

    Wine Grape Growers Australia is pleased to announce its 2014-15 Executive Committee which was confirmed at its Annual General Meeting earlier this month.

    With roll-over of half of the executive committee each year, WGGA confirmed the four incoming grower members in 2014-15.  Three of the representative bodies that appoint the members saw fit to renominate the existing members for another two-year term while the Wine Grape Council of South Australia nominated Dr Mardi Longbottom to replace the outgoing Simon Berry at the completion of his term.

    WGGA Chair, Mr Vic Patrick said of Mardi’s appointment “This appointment continues the process of youthful invigoration of the WGGA Executive Committee and I welcome her willingness to be involved.”  Mardi brings extensive viticultural knowledge and experience to the position as well as familiarity with WGGA’s operations.  Mardi has a family interest in a South East South Australian vineyard and is a viticulturist with the Australian Wine Research Institute.  Mardi’s prior involvement with WGGA is as a general member as well as a member of WGGA’s Decision Support Network – a network of younger growers who receive an introduction to the organisation’s decision-making processes. 

    Simon Berry stood down from representative duties at the national level to focus on his leadership role in the South Australian growers association and his own vineyard and viticulture consulting work.  After four years with WGGA, Simon will not be lost to the organisation however as he will continue to provide input into the organisation’s market access and MRL negotiation initiatives.

    The remaining four members of the executive team will serve out the second half of their two-year terms in accordance with the Constitution.

    In all, the WGGA Executive Committee membership for 2014-15 is as follows:

    • Andrew Weeks, Riverland (SA)
    • Mardi Longbottom, South Australia (1)
    • Vic Patrick, South Australia (2)
    • Robert Bellato, Riverina (NSW)
    • Brian Englefield, Murray Valley (VIC)
    • Justin Jarrett, Rest of New South Wales & Queensland
    • Ben Rose, Rest of Victoria & Tasmania
    • Colin Bell, Western Australia

    In the first meeting after the AGM the new committee appointed its Chair.  Vic Patrick was reappointed to the role and agreed to continue for the next year.  Executive Director of WGGA, Mr Lawrie Stanford, said “Vic’s experience and the respect he holds in the industry are invaluable and I look forward to this ongoing partnership in leading programs and services for Australia’s winegrape growers.”

    Media enquiries to Lawrie Stanford, Executive Director on 0417 859 282.

    Images available for publishing on 08 8133 4400 or

    About WGGA

    WGGA is the national voice for Australian winegrape growers.  It is an incorporated association that is accountable to its members through a representative Executive Committee.  There are roughly 6,200 winegrape growers in Australia and WGGA can count around 3,700 of these as having a direct involvement in the organisation. 

    The value of winegrape sales across approximately 55 of Australia’s electorates is estimated to have been roughly $880 million in 2012.  At a recent peak in winegrape prices, earlier in the 2000’s, the value of winegrape sales was around $1.5 billion. 

    Around 95% of the value of winegrape sales is concentrated in 17 commonwealth electorates. 

    WGGA embraces a mission of advancing the development and sustainability of the Australian wine sector and pursues this mission across the four dimensions of a quadruple bottom line:

    • Economic ‑ enhancing grower competitiveness, grower profitability potential and maximising contribution to the Australian and regional economies.
    • Social ‑ strengthening supply chain business ethics; responsibility to communities and employees; supporting responsible wine consumption.
    • Environment ‑ embracing a custodian role for water and ecological assets; supporting biodiversity.
    • Governance ‑ championing transparency and equity across the wine value chain and positive revenue growth for government from a progressive tax base.
    A PDF copy of this Media Release can be downloaded from the WGGA website
  • 02 Dec 2014 10:12 AM | Louise Stokes
    Optometry Australia has announced its new National President, Kate Gifford, who is only the second female and youngest candidate to be elected to the optometry profession’s highest office.

    The sole practice owner of Gerry & Johnson Optometrists in Brisbane, Mrs Gifford’s appointment further exemplifies the trending nature of Australia’s small business sector which has seen a significant growth in women running a business .

    Mrs Gifford said: “I enjoy the challenges of running my own practice as this has taught me to constantly innovate and to demonstrate value to our patients”.

    She takes this philosophy into her leadership roles: “Being involved in the sector’s professional development is important to me, and I’m particularly interested in advancing and evolving clinical and commercial education for optometrists.

    “I’m also very passionate about Optometry Australia and the role that it plays, in collaboration with the State Divisions, in leading, engaging and promoting the profession of optometry and eye and vision health.

    “The optometry sector is changing rapidly, not only due to technology advancements but due to policy, structural, societal and gender adjustments. Optometry Australia is working to ensure that these changes are benefitting and not hampering our profession, supporting the profession in meeting the eye health and vision care needs of the Australian community.

    “Preventative eye health and vision care is critical to a healthy Australia and as a result of the work undertaken by Optometry Australia, and the profession of optometry, we have one of the best optometry sectors in the world. I am deeply proud to be given this opportunity to lead the sector.”

    Mrs Gifford has been a Director of Optometry Australia since late 2010. She is formerly President of, and remains on the Board of Optometry Queensland and Northern Territory. She is a graduate from QUT (2003) where she received First Class Honours and a University Medal. She joined Patrick Gerry Optometrists, now Gerry & Johnson, in early 2005 and took over the practice in July 2007.

    A part-time PhD student since 2011, Mrs Gifford specialises in children’s vision, binocular vision and contact lenses. An award winning clinical supervisor and visiting lecturer at QUT, she has written 21 peer reviewed and professional publications and presented more than 50 lecturers at conferences in Australia, New Zealand, England and the USA.

    “I enjoy solving clinical puzzles and delivering best practice clinical care to each of my patients. I also enjoy being involved in a professional smorgasbord of activities and believe that my diverse professional experience informs my understanding of nearly every facet of optometry - clinical, academic, research, professional education and business ownership”, Mrs Gifford said.

    Mrs Gifford succeeds Andrew Harris who has served on the National and Victorian Division Boards of Optometry Australia over the last 15 years. He held the role of National President from 2007 to 2010 and resumed the role in late 2011.

    Mrs Gifford said she was honoured to be taking over the role of National President. “Andrew Harris has done an outstanding job leading the optometry sector and through the recent brand review, putting the foundations in place to support the profession strongly into the future.

    “We sincerely wish him every success as he returns his attention to his private practice whilst pursuing his commitments on a

    For further information please contact: Richard Amos -, 0418 344 978; Tony Faccenda –, 0411 231 433.

    Optometry Australia is the peak professional body for optometrists. Representing more than 90% of all Australian-based optometrists, Optometry Australia’s focus is to lead and advance the profession of optometry by putting eye-health front and centre of Australian healthcare. Optometry Australia was formerly known as Optometrists Association Australia. The name change was made on 28 May 2014 to better reflect its role and purpose.

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