What we do

Since 2000, we have shared news, careers and resources to help purpose-driven people and organisations grow their impact. With over 1.5 million people using our site each year, we like to think we’re pretty good at it. 

Pro Bono News is the number one news outlet for Australia’s social economy. It’s your biweekly dose of news, opinion and analysis, keeping you up to date with what’s happening and why it matters for you. We cover all sectors under the umbrella of the purpose-economy, from charities and not for profits, to impact investing, philanthropy, volunteering, corporate social responsibility, and social enterprise, and shine a light on issues often underreported in mainstream media. You can find our editorial policies here.

Our careers team are dedicated to helping you land your next dream role, or find your next purpose-driven employee. We also want to make sure you’re equipped with all of the tricks of the trade. Whether you want help standing out from other applicants, upskilling once you’re in the role, or advice on recruiting the perfect candidate, we’ve got helpful courses, educational webinars and relevant careers news that can support you.

We also have lots of other resources to help activate good intentions. So whether you want to get social and find an event to go to, search for a new funding opportunity, or find which other organisations are out there, we’ve got you covered.

Did we mention we throw our own events? Keep an eye out for news about our upcoming networking events throughout the year. 

The impact we make

As a social enterprise, creating real value is at the heart of everything we do. With this in mind, we’re pretty proud that our social return on investment was measured by EY in 2015 at 11:1. What does that mean? Glad you asked. For every dollar invested in our services, $11 of social benefit was delivered to the community. 

To celebrate, we had a fun interactive graphic made, so have a play and learn more about our products and their impact. If you love data, you can also dive into the details here

What guides us

We know the social sector loves buzzwords but we want to keep it simple:

  • Our purpose is to activate good intentions.
  • Our mission is to dedicate our time, energy and resources to support and enable the growth of a thriving social economy.
  • We do this by sharing news, careers and resources for the common good.

Our revenue model

As a social enterprise and B Corp, we’re a for-profit business that exists to make a positive impact. We fund ourselves through a number of paid products so that we can keep our news service and skilled volunteering opportunities free. We get revenue from people advertising job roles and events, purchasing Salary Survey reports, attending webinars, listing their organisations in our directories (Guide to Giving, Source and Good Business) or advertising across our website and through our various channels. In return, you get news, careers and resources for the common good. We are formally committed to donate the equivalent of 5% or more of our time through pro-bono services. If you’d like to have a chat about ways we could work together, we’d love to hear from you.

Where we began

In 1998, Karen Mahlab AM decided she needed a change. After running a publishing company for 10 years, she felt the process of business for the sake of profit no longer inspired her. A three month sabbatical gave her time to think and she came up with a plan.

Inspired by the growth of the internet (it was pre-2000) she wanted to create an online business that could bring together community and make a difference.

Taking the Guide to Giving, which she had started under the Mahlab Group in 1990, as a ready revenue stream she created what she called a “social purpose business venture”. Today, this type of business would be known as a social enterprise. You know it as Pro Bono Australia.

To hear more from Karen, have a look at her blog.

Editorial advisory board

Meet Pro Bono Australia’s editorial advisory board. Made up of key individuals working across the spectrum of the social sector, the board provides our news team with expert insight and informs our news service by contributing ideas and articles. Find out more here.