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Organisation: Pro Bono Australia
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Xavier Smerdon is a journalist specialising in the Not for Profit sector. He writes breaking and investigative news articles.


Free Legal Help Now Available for Every Charity


Xavier Smerdon, Thursday, 3rd March 2016 -  All of Australia’s 600,000 charities and Not for Profits can now access free legal advice, following the national launch of a new information hub.

Government Philanthropy Rule Changes Questioned


Xavier Smerdon, Tuesday, 1st March 2016 -  A new directive from the Victorian Government has the potential to significantly impact endowment fundraising by charities that are also state government agencies, according to a Melbourne fundraising consultant.

300 Churches Face Charity Chop


Xavier Smerdon, Tuesday, 1st March 2016 -  More than 300 churches could lose their tax exempt status for failing to submit paperwork to the national charity regulator.

Rocking the Boat


Xavier Smerdon, Monday, 29th February 2016 -  For Rosie Thomas the issue of bullying in schools has become her life’s passion. Thomas and her sister Lucy are the people behind a national movement to make schools safer and more inclusive places. Thomas is this week’s Changemaker. She spoke to Xavier Smerdon.

Australians and Robots Working Together


Xavier Smerdon, Monday, 29th February 2016 -  Australians could be working alongside artificial devices and robotic devices within the next 20 years, according to a landmark report by the Federal Government’s agency for scientific research. The CSIRO has launched a report claiming that rapid advances in automated…

Lucy Turnbull Named NFP Patron


Xavier Smerdon, Thursday, 25th February 2016 -  Lucy Turnbull AO has been announced as the inaugural patron of The Australian Centre for Social Innovation.

Evolving Chair: Leading from the Top


Xavier Smerdon, Thursday, 25th February 2016 -  Both board and management executives in the Not for Profit sector have a fundamental role to play in creating transparent and accountable governance structures, according to the National President and Board Chair of the Australian Council for Social Services, Tony Reidy in this month’s Evolving Chair.

Cutting Red Tape to Save Charities $29 Million


Xavier Smerdon, Tuesday, 23rd February 2016 -  Cutting red tape could save Australian charities up to $29 million, according to a new report released by the national charity regulator and Deloitte Access Economics. The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) said that charities were facing an “administrative…

Government’s Changes Could ‘Undermine Philanthropy’


Xavier Smerdon, Tuesday, 23rd February 2016 -  The Turnbull Government has been warned against changing the minimum annual distribution required by philanthropic funds. The Community Council for Australia (CCA) has written to Assistant Treasurer Kelly O’Dwyer to respond to proposed changes to the private ancillary fund (PAF)…

The Definition of Determined


Xavier Smerdon, Monday, 22nd February 2016 -  Peter Gibilisco has spent his life advocating for the inclusion of people with disability in Australian society. Gibilisco is this week’s Changemaker. At just 14 years old Dr Peter Gibilisco was diagnosed with Friedreich’s Ataxia, a disease that causes degeneration…

Women Closed Out of IT Industry


Xavier Smerdon, Monday, 22nd February 2016 -  Women are being systemically closed out of the IT and web development industries in Australia, and the jobs that they are able to obtain are the lowest paying ones, according to figures from a leading software training provider. Dynamic Web

Government Should Tackle Youth Unemployment – Mission Australia


Xavier Smerdon, Monday, 22nd February 2016 -  Youth unemployment in Australia remains “unacceptably high” according to one of the country’s largest community service organisations. In its pre-budget submission, Mission Australia called for the creation of better pathways for disadvantaged young people to transition to employment, “given the…
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