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Investing in leadership: Social Impact Leadership Australia

29 March 2022 at 7:00 am
Are you the CEO of a for-purpose organisation in Victoria or Tasmania? Apply now to be included in the next cohort of SILA.

Contributor | 29 March 2022 at 7:00 am


Investing in leadership: Social Impact Leadership Australia
29 March 2022 at 7:00 am

Are you the CEO of a for-purpose organisation in Victoria or Tasmania? Apply now to be included in the next cohort of SILA.

Applications are closing soon for the next cohort of Social Impact Leadership Australia (SILA), an innovative leadership and capacity-building program from four of Australia’s leading philanthropic foundations.

Over 10-months, each fully-funded SILA Program aims to strengthen and support up to 24 leaders and their for-purpose organisations through a series of development initiatives, including coaching sessions, peer networking and an organisational diagnostics assessment.

Over five years, SILA will be offered to for-purpose leaders from all states and territories across Australia.

Current participants are based in NSW and ACT (2021-2022) and applications are now open for cohort two, for CEOs from Victoria and Tasmania (2022-2023). 

The national program brings together four of Australia’s leading philanthropic organisations – The Myer Foundation, the Sidney Myer Fund, the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation and the Paul Ramsay Foundation – and is delivered by the Centre for Social Impact, a leader in social impact education, research and leadership.

The program will be delivered by academics and practitioners, with in-person retreats and a fully-funded sabbatical which enables participants to have the time to recharge, reflect and apply learnings from the program.

Learnings from current SILA participants

Current participant and CEO of Top Blokes Foundation, Melissa Abu-Gazaleh, said it was a comment from one of the facilitators early in the program that deeply resonated with her – “that the organisation stops growing when the CEO stops growing”.

“I realised I was ready to be pushed, to learn, grow and be vulnerable. It forced me to question whether we were moving the dial as an organisation,” Abu-Gazaleh says.

“I also came to the realisation that one of my core priorities as CEO should be to create a culture of innovation by embedding curiosity and exploration as key values. There’s a ripple effect that flows to the rest of the organisation.”

David Keegan, CEO of Host International and participant from the current SILA cohort, said he was motivated to learn from and be inspired by others who were passionate about creating social good.

“I feel really privileged to be part of this program and to have an opportunity to recharge, reset and be inspired,” Keegan says.

Jodie Darge, CEO of Project Youth, said that SILA involved a different style of learning and was an opportunity to step back, reflect and connect with other CEOs.

“SILA has challenged us, it’s put us into discomfort and helped us understand what conflict looks like, which is where I think you actually start growing as a CEO. For me, this has been an amazing highlight of the program,” Darge says.



For more information and to apply visit

Applications for cohort two close on 15 April.

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