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$1M Collaboration for Impact

16 October 2014 at 9:47 am
Lina Caneva
Eleven communities are in the running for up to $1m to tackle Australia’s most challenging social issues as part of a new initiative called The Search.

Lina Caneva | 16 October 2014 at 9:47 am


$1M Collaboration for Impact
16 October 2014 at 9:47 am

Eleven communities are in the running for up to $1m to tackle Australia’s most challenging social issues as part of a new initiative called The Search.

The Collaboration for Impact, convened by the Centre for Social Impact, says a shortlist of 11 communities are now in the running to receive a resource pool of up to $1 million to tackle some of Australia’s most complex and challenging social issues.

Described as the first of its kind in Australia, The Search is an initiative to develop the capacity of communities in the early stages of implementing the Collective Impact framework.

“The framework is an innovative way to tackle entrenched social challenges such as: multi-­?generational unemployment, disengagement from education, homelessness, crime and poverty,” Kerry Graham, Convenor of the Collaboration for Impact said.

The framework has had significant success in the United States and Canada.

A panel of national and international judges has assessed the applications and shortlisted the 11 most promising early-­?stage collective impact initiatives.

They are:


  • Great South Coast focused on cradle to career
  • Central Goldfields Shire focused on children, youth and families
  • Geelong Region focused on joblessness


  • Clarendon Vale focused on increasing public safety
  • Launceston focused on cradle to career
  • Burnie focused on worklessness

New South Wales

  • Bourke focused on youth justice
  • Claymore focused on cradle to career


  • Logan focused on early childhood

South Australia

  • Whyalla focused on health and wellbeing of children and young people

Western Australia

  • Halls Creek focused on healing

The initiative was launched in June 2014 and has attracted 49 Expressions of Interest from across Australia. Of the 49 submitted applications, the largest number came from NSW (17), followed by Victoria (11) and Tasmania (5).

Eighteen of all applications received (37 per cent) were child and youth focussed, seven (14 per cent) focussed on reducing disadvantage, and six (12 per cent) were around unemployment. Other focus areas included youth justice, homelessness, family and domestic violence, economic development, community building, healing, the environment and public safety.

 “The shortlisted communities will continue to develop their applications over the next four months and will have access to a grant of up to $5000 to purchase services or support to do so. They will submit a final application by 11 February 2015, with the selected community to be announced on 11 March 2015,” Kerry Graham said.

“The overwhelming and nation-­?wide response we have to this initiative reflects the fact that many communities around Australia are fed up with short-­?term, fragmented and uncoordinated effort to tackle our most challenging social issues,” she said.

“These communities are stepping up to the challenge of working together to identify and solve their own issues, on their own terms.”

Andrew Young, CEO at the Centre for Social Impact said: “There are many communities and many social issue areas in which we’ve made little or no progress in two or three decades, and this is in spite of massive spending growth over that time.

“In areas of complex social need, the verdict has been returned: finding and funding another program through a competitive tendering process will not fix it.

“We need whole-­?of-­community approaches for our most complex social issues. This is hard work and it requires real investment in the willingness and capacity to collaborate. The Search provides a process and support to catalyse this change in approach.

“Congratulations to the 49 communities that have entered into the process. These communities have all recognised the need for new approaches and many have already made significant progress by bringing people together to work towards better outcomes.

“The Search was initiated because of the failure of the current models for social change and intervention to achieve significant social impact, regardless of how much effort and resources are spent. It is part of a broader strategy to grow the field of collective impact in Australia and will help transform the way social purpose organisations – including government and funders – and communities respond to complex social problems in Australia.”

The Search is convened by The Centre for Social Impact and supported by a Catalysing Group, which includes the following organisations: Westpac Foundation, Results Leadership Group (Australia and USA), Social Solutions Group (USA), Blackbaud Pacific, Social Ventures Australia, Australian Communities Foundation and the Centre for Social Impact.

The judges

  • Scott Johnson, President and CEO, Social Solutions Global
  • David Crosbie, CEO, the Community Council for Australia
  • Fay Hanleybrown, Managing Director, FSG
  • Jocelyn Murphy AM
  • Seri Rankin, CEO, Ten20 Foundation
  • Vivien Twyford, Founder, Twyfords Consulting
  • Jeff Whalan AO, Managing Director, Jeff Whalan Learning Group
  • Andrew Young, CEO, The Centre for Social Impact

The Collective Impact framework is a structured and disciplined way for Government,Not for Profits, business, philanthropists and community groups to work together to create large-­scale change.


Lina Caneva  |  Editor  |  @ProBonoNews

Lina Caneva has been a journalist for more than 35 years. She was the editor of Pro Bono Australia News from when it was founded in 2000 until 2018.

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