The Takeaway is Hope: CHANGE NOW!

Communities in Control 2011

The Takeaway is Hope: CHANGE NOW!

Conference opened 30 May 2011, Melbourne
It doesn't have to be this way. The Berlin Wall fell. Nelson Mandela walked out of prison. And now the crowds across the Middle East are marching out into the streets and saying, no, we don't have to go on doing the same things in the same way, we can kick over the board and start with a clean slate. We have seen the power of hope, and the power of despair, and the explosion of youth.

Yet here in Australia, we go on in the same old way, carrying out our good works in our own corners, while our politics and our media and our public discourse becomes more and more dysfunctional. Reforms and reports and inquiries are announced endlessly, but nothing much seems to change. Our good intentions trickle away into the sand. At a time when seismic changes in technology and ecology and commerce and world politics and culture batter us, nobody seems able to act decisively. Are we satisfied with what we've got?

It's time to stop waiting for the government to act. The community sector in Australia is big enough to move on its own - bigger than agriculture, bigger than media, bigger than the car industry. We don't have to confine ourselves to minimalism and incrementalism. If we knew our own strength, if we weren't so domesticated, if we really believed in the values that we espouse, what could we achieve?

At Communities in Control 2011, we undertook to get moving, immediately, together.

> Download 2011 conference brochure (PDF)

Added 31 May 2011

Sharan Burrow

The 2011 Joan Kirner Social Justice Oration

Sharan presided over one of the most defining periods in the ACTU's history as the union movement worked to defeat the former Liberal Government's unpopular and ultimately unsuccessful WorkChoices legislation. Here, Sharan presents the Inaugural Joan Kirner Social Justice Oration.

Added 31 May 2011

Simon McKeon

The Australian Community Sector - Inspiration, perspiration, liberation

Simon McKeon knows how to make a profit, and when not to. He's worked with Macquarie Bank, and he's been involved with not-for-profits ranging from the CSIRO to the Global Poverty Project. Hes seen what businesspeople can't do, and he's seen what activists don't know, and he knows how to bring the two sides together to change the world.

Added 31 May 2011

Phil Ruthven

Social Sector Trends, Facts and Insights: Bigger and better

The future for the not-for-profit industry remains bright, with long-term government grants and service provision contracts keeping revenue volatility down and revenue is anticipated to increase by an average of 4.1% per year through to 2015-16. But what does all this mean?

Added 31 May 2011

Elizabeth Broderick

Just Communities: Facts, lies, atrocities, and answers

We're working for the rights of others: but what about our own rights? How do we ensure a sustainable workforce where people are paid fairly? Should poverty be the reward for a lifetime spent caring?

Added 31 May 2011

The Hon Joan Kirner AC, Cr Stephen Mayne, Luke Ryan, Cr Samantha Dunn, Angela Savage

The Great Debate

"Local Government is the best level of Government to reform and assist communities." A debate hosted by the Hon Joan Kirner AM, Former Premier of Victoria and Victorian Communities Ambassador.