Events

Webinar Series: Putting disability at the centre of philanthropy’s inclusion conversation

Where: Online

When: Tue 7th Jun 2022, 12:00 – 13:15 (1 hour, 15 minutes)

Presented by: Philanthropy Australia

Philanthropy has the opportunity to help remove existing barriers and to innovate with people with disability to ensure that Australia becomes more equitable and inclusive. But there are pockets of philanthropy that are already working to improve outcomes for people living with disabilities. In this webinar we will examine the data to understand what can be done and hear about some of the programs that are already underway.

Putting disability at the centre of philanthropy’s inclusion conversation 

The COVID-19 pandemic has increased social disadvantage and sharpened the need to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion are priorities for everyone.  But all too often, people living with disability are not part of this conversation.  Stanford Social Innovation Review’s recent paper, ‘Centering Disability’ states: 

“If the philanthropic sector is to advance social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion, then we must recognise disability as central to our work.” 

1 in 6 Australians live with disability. In 2020 The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare published a report on People with disability in Australia. Whilst acknowledging that there are still gaps in the data, the report outlines the stark differences experienced by people with disabilities across most aspects of life:  

  • People with disability find it about twice as hard to get a job as other Australians and more difficult to keep it. Only 48% of working age Australians with disability are employed, compared to 80% of people without disability.  
  • People with disability have lower levels of access to preventative healthcare. 24% of people with disability experience health that is very good or excellent, compared with 65% of Australians without disability.  
  • People with disability experience high/very high psychological distress. 32% compared with 8% of people without disability. 
  • People with disability have experienced violence. 47% of people with disability over 15 compared with 36% of people without disability. 

As we emerge from the pandemic and begin to rebuild the economy, our recovery plans must include the means of enabling people with disabilities to live the lives they choose.  Philanthropy has the opportunity to help remove existing barriers and to innovate with people with disability to ensure that Australia becomes more equitable and inclusive. 

But there are pockets of philanthropy that are already working to improve outcomes for people living with disabilities.  In this webinar we will examine the data to understand what can be done and hear about some of the programs that are already underway. 

 

Philanthropy Australia Lead: Jack Heath - CEO, Philanthropy Australia

Jack has been a leader of for-purpose organisations for more than 25 years.  He believes there has never been a more important time for philanthropy as we grapple with huge societal challenges and diminished trust in our public institutions.  Jack holds a deep-seated belief in the ability of philanthropy to inspire long-lasting, positive change in individual lives and communities.  He advocates for an aligned philanthropy which is big-hearted, clear-headed and joyful.

A graduate of the University of Melbourne in Honours Arts and Law, Jack has also undertaken executive courses at Harvard and Stanford universities.  He served in Government as a diplomat, speechwriter and senior adviser to Federal Ministers, including Prime Minister Keating and Foreign Minister Rudd.  Following the suicide of his young cousin, Jack led the establishment of the ReachOut youth mental health organisations in Australia, Ireland and the United States before serving as CEO at the national mental health organization SANE Australia for eight years.   

Jack sits on a number of advisory boards and committees and has received awards for his contributions in mental health and community service.   He lives in Sydney with his publisher wife Catherine Milne and their dog Fred, and they are parents to Lucy and Jamie. 


Moderator: Dr Kirsty Nowlan - Executive Director of The Achieve Foundation  

Kirsty Nowlan  of The Achieve Foundation is a new organisation dedicated to increasing philanthropic and social investment in disability to build a more inclusive Australia.  Kirsty has a background in leading large systems change initiatives across both international development and in Australia across diverse fields including disability, peacebuilding, child mortality and ageism.   

Prior to joining Achieve, Kirsty was an executive at The Benevolent Society.  In that capacity she chaired two national initiatives – Every Child – which aims to ensure equitable child development by ensuring families got the support they needed; and EveryAGE Counts, Australia’s national campaign on Ageism.   

Kirsty on the boards of The Centre for Social Purpose – a membership organisation for For Purpose organisations – and Peacifica, a Pacific focussed peacebuilding organisation.  She holds a PhD in international law and politics.

Presenters - TBA

 

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