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Innovation for Purpose - Givewell Forum


13 March 2014 at 9:16 am
Staff Reporter
With a theme of “redefining the social sector”, the Givewell Forum for Purpose will take place across Australia this March and April, to reveal how organisations can think outside the traditional boundaries of ‘Not for Profit’ and draw on innovations from across society.

Staff Reporter | 13 March 2014 at 9:16 am


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Innovation for Purpose - Givewell Forum
13 March 2014 at 9:16 am

With a theme of “redefining the social sector”, the Givewell Forum for Purpose will take place across Australia this March and April, to reveal how organisations can think outside the traditional boundaries of "Not for Profit" and draw on innovations from across society.

In its 9th year in 2014, Givewell’s Forum For Purpose will take in five cities across Australia, starting in Sydney on March 21.

A growing desire for purpose in organisations has seen the line between business and Not for Profit become increasingly blurred. Attention is moving to shared value and a position for social outcomes beyond government or Not for Profit .

Emerging technologies and methods of consumption are changing the way we participate in society.

Not for Profits, much like any organisation, must innovate to remain relevant, efficient and effective.

Guest speaker at the Forum in Brisbane Dr Craig Furneaux of the Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Non-profit Studies at QUT says innovation done well, can not only lead to more productive and financially robust organisations, but also greater fulfilment of an organisation’s purpose.

However the reverse is also true, done poorly, innovation can result in “wasted effort, increased inefficiency, a frustrated workplace and disgruntled beneficiaries”.

It is not enough to simply try something new. Innovation should be done with your organisation’s strategy and purpose in mind.

An example of this is the Macarthur Real Estate Engagement Program. To help solve the issue of homelessness, they work alongside real estate agents to support tenants in hardship before they are evicted.

This innovative partnership benefits both sectors, saving stress, time and money for the real estate agents and preventing people from entering the homelessness service system, guest speaker Eva Gerencer of the Western Sydney Community Forum says.

Co-operatives work in a similar way. They aim to generate a profit like any other business. However, these profits are then fed back into the co-operative for the benefit of the users.

In communities where profits are not available and industry is exiting, co-operatives can provide enterprising rather than welfare based solutions to help local economies recover, guest speaker Melina Morrison of the Business Council of Co-operatives says.

The national series of Forums will provide an opportunity to share knowledge and develop new ideas to guide the sector in thinking differently in the way it sees itself and its work.

For more information, click here.


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