Social Enterprise News

News from QSEC and the Social Enterprise Sector.

  • 25 November 2021 1:38 PM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    Supplying to government is about to get easier for Queensland’s growing social enterprise sector with $1 million from the $8 million Social Enterprise Jobs Fund (SEJF) funding, for activation initiatives and procurement announced Thursday 18 November 2021.

    Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said supporting the growth of social enterprises and creating jobs was an important part of the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan.

    As part of the program, Social Traders will build the capability of government buyers for social procurement and by extending access to their procurement portal.

    The Social Traders Portal will be available to all Queensland Government agencies to ensure government buyers have access to a database of genuine, quality social enterprises.

    “Each year, the government invests more than $14 billion in goods and services and a further $5 billion to build and maintain infrastructure,” Minister Farmer said.

    “We want to ensure our social enterprises score a larger slice of this investment. 

    The State Government has also committed an additional $385,000 to the Queensland Social Enterprise Council (QSEC).

    The investment will help QSEC address the gap in profile and knowledge between social enterprises the private sector and to build regional development activities.

    A further $100,000 has been committed to sponsoring the 2022 Social Enterprise World Forum (SEWF), to be held in Brisbane under licence with WhiteBox Enterprises.

    “We acknowledge them for approaching their position in their communities with responsibility and with the interest of promoting its success” Minister Farmer concluded.

    QSEC will continue to work toward addressing the significant gaps in social, environmental and cultural business advantage, leveraging from  the 2019 Queensland Social Enterprise Strategy.

    FULL Details

  • 10 November 2021 12:50 PM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    Queensland is set to ease restrictions for entry to Queensland from 17 December 2021, which is the date it is expected that at least 80% of Queenslanders, 16 years and older, will be double vaccinated.

    The Government has announced that there will be restrictions for unvaccinated staff and patrons for a range of hospitality and entertainment venues.

    QSEC would like to know how best to help businesses impacted by these new restrictions.

    Take the survey and tell us now 

    Modelling indicates that when the border restrictions are eased, the COVID virus will start to circulate in our community. It is likely that outbreaks will start to occur, particularly in areas of Queensland with low vaccination rates. This will be particularly difficult for health professionals and front line workers, vulnerable and marginalised communities with complex needs and issues. 

    Because of this, the Queensland State Government has announced restrictions for unvaccinated people when 80% double vaccination is achieved.

    At this stage, restrictions target non-essential leisure activities including attending hospitality venues (hotels, pubs, clubs, taverns, bars, restaurants and cafes) and entertainment venues (nightclubs, live music venues, stadiums, theatres, cinemas and festivals).

    As a guide, essential services or activities are the same businesses that remained open during lockdowns, such as grocery stores, pharmacies, post offices, newsagents and clothing stores and activities such as exercise.

    More details on the Qld Government site

    Do you need additional support to manage the COVID restrictions? QSEC has been working with the Small Business Commissioner to assemble mechanisms for support. There is also a handbook we are creating to help guide you if your business has a COVID case. 

    Go to the COVID Business Support page 

  • 02 November 2021 4:51 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The QSEC Good Giving Guide is here!

    For those looking to #switch2good this holiday season, look no further than the Queensland Social Enterprise (QSEC) Good Giving Guide, showcasing a small selection of the Council's members... 


    According to a national customer sentiment survey conducted by banking giant ING in 2019, an estimated $400 million was spent on 10 million unwanted Christmas gifts, many of which were discarded and likely ended up in landfill.

    QSEC president Richard Warner said "As the borders open back up in coming weeks, we will all be preparing for the coming together of families and friends from across borders and the world. It's natural to want to spend time in each other's company, and as the festive season approaches, to share gifts. However as a sector, we like to celebrate ways to reduce waste, redesign and reimagine a world where corporate and personal giving goes beyond consumerism."

    Social enterprises embrace the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals and every dollar spent in a social enterprise is returned exponentially in social, environmental and cultural benefits to community. 

    Unlike a charity model, social enterprises primarily rely on trade to produce their benefits. 

    "Social enterprises come in all shapes and sizes, from law firms to coffee shops and everything in between. We know how tough these past few years has been on businesses. Social enterprises go beyond business as usual, so this year more than ever, we are asking people to switch their spend to good and buy from your local social enterprise," Mr Warner continued.

    Top tips on Good Giving include:

    1. Is the product sustainably/ethically sourced?
    2. Does it reuse/reduce/recycle/redesign resources for impact?
    3. Does it provide jobs/income/support for marginalised groups?
    4. Is it culturally appropriate/respectful?
    5. Can I re-tell the impact story?

    For those looking to #switch2good this holiday season, look no further than the Queensland Social Enterprise (QSEC) Good Giving Guide, showcasing a small selection of the Council's members. Can't find what you are looking for? Why not check out the whole directory

    GOOD GIVING GUIDE


  • 02 November 2021 11:59 AM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    So excited to learn that Hotel Housekeeping are one of four organisations to share in $1.2 million in social enterprise grants from the Westpac Foundation!!

    Hotel Housekeeping is a social enterprise that creates sustainable employment for young people facing barriers to work, including refugees and asylum seekers

    Article below: (Read)

    Westpac Foundation has awarded a total $1.2 million to four social enterprises creating jobs and training opportunities for people overcoming barriers to work.


    The Social Enterprise Grants, each valued at $300,000 over three years, will help Green Collect, Worldview Foundation, Hotel Housekeeping and Dismantle (through social enterprise ReNew Property Maintenance) scale their social impact to create an estimated 1,400 new jobs and employment pathways by 2024 for Australians experiencing disadvantage.

    “As COVID restrictions ease across the nation, the funding will help these organisations continue to provide jobs for people that can be excluded from the mainstream employment market, helping them access employment opportunities as Australia re-opens,” said Amy Lyden, Acting CEO Westpac Foundation.

    The four social enterprises have all been previously funded by Westpac Foundation, and Amy said it’s this long-term approach to funding that enables social enterprise partners to strengthen their business models to scale and create greater impact in the community.

    “Our goal is to walk alongside our social enterprise partners as they mature and diversify their funding opportunities,” she said. “Our grants include tailored investment readiness support plans to help our social enterprises access the funds needed to grow and scale.”

    Grant recipient Hotel Housekeeping provides housekeeping for hotels and resorts and commercial cleaning services in Queensland and NSW, creating sustainable employment for young people in Australia, including people from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds.

    Despite the reduction in hotel occupancy during the COVID pandemic, the social enterprise is poised for growth once the industry returns to a more ‘normal’ operating environment.

    Shannon Price General Manager of Hotel Housekeeping said as the organisation scales, the grant will provide an opportunity to strengthen their business model and boost their approach to providing wrap-around employee support.

    “We have a social support model that enables us to work with our employees, many of whom face barriers to employment, to build their confidence, create tailored development plans and training programs, and help them transition to mainstream careers,” he said.    

    Like Hotel Housekeeping, many of the Foundation’s partners have experienced business impacts due to the COVID pandemic.

    To support social enterprise partners whose revenues have been significantly impacted due to extraordinary events like the pandemic, the Foundation has also established a Resilience Fund to provide urgent funding.

    The Bread & Butter Project, a social enterprise artisan bakery that trains people from refugee backgrounds has received a $100,000 Resilience Grant to help them maintain operations and refugee trainee jobs following a significant decline in their wholesale bakery trade due to Sydney’s extended lockdown.

    “The Resilience Fund enables us to support our social enterprise partners through unforeseen circumstances and deploy emergency funding outside our usual grant-making process,” said Amy.

    “Our approach has always been about investing for the long-term, and this new fund ensures we can be responsive to our partners’ immediate needs.”

    In addition to grant funding, Westpac Foundation’s social enterprise partners receive extensive non-financial support and capacity building.


    Westpac Foundation has awarded a total $1.2 million to four social enterprises creating jobs and training opportunities for people overcoming barriers to work.

    The Social Enterprise Grants, each valued at $300,000 over three years, will help Green Collect, Worldview Foundation, Hotel Housekeeping and Dismantle (through social enterprise ReNew Property Maintenance) scale their social impact to create an estimated 1,400 new jobs and employment pathways by 2024 for Australians experiencing disadvantage.

    “As COVID restrictions ease across the nation, the funding will help these organisations continue to provide jobs for people that can be excluded from the mainstream employment market, helping them access employment opportunities as Australia re-opens,” said Amy Lyden, Acting CEO Westpac Foundation.

    The four social enterprises have all been previously funded by Westpac Foundation, and Amy said it’s this long-term approach to funding that enables social enterprise partners to strengthen their business models to scale and create greater impact in the community.

    “Our goal is to walk alongside our social enterprise partners as they mature and diversify their funding opportunities,” she said. “Our grants include tailored investment readiness support plans to help our social enterprises access the funds needed to grow and scale.”

    Grant recipient Hotel Housekeeping provides housekeeping for hotels and resorts and commercial cleaning services in Queensland and NSW, creating sustainable employment for young people in Australia, including people from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds.

    Despite the reduction in hotel occupancy during the COVID pandemic, the social enterprise is poised for growth once the industry returns to a more ‘normal’ operating environment.

    Shannon Price General Manager of Hotel Housekeeping said as the organisation scales, the grant will provide an opportunity to strengthen their business model and boost their approach to providing wrap-around employee support.

    “We have a social support model that enables us to work with our employees, many of whom face barriers to employment, to build their confidence, create tailored development plans and training programs, and help them transition to mainstream careers,” he said.    

    Like Hotel Housekeeping, many of the Foundation’s partners have experienced business impacts due to the COVID pandemic.

    To support social enterprise partners whose revenues have been significantly impacted due to extraordinary events like the pandemic, the Foundation has also established a Resilience Fund to provide urgent funding.

    The Bread & Butter Project, a social enterprise artisan bakery that trains people from refugee backgrounds has received a $100,000 Resilience Grant to help them maintain operations and refugee trainee jobs following a significant decline in their wholesale bakery trade due to Sydney’s extended lockdown.

    “The Resilience Fund enables us to support our social enterprise partners through unforeseen circumstances and deploy emergency funding outside our usual grant-making process,” said Amy.

    “Our approach has always been about investing for the long-term, and this new fund ensures we can be responsive to our partners’ immediate needs.”

    In addition to grant funding, Westpac Foundation’s social enterprise partners receive extensive non-financial support and capacity building.


  • 01 November 2021 4:35 PM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    QSEC is thrilled to see the official launch event for the Central Highlands Social Enterprise Alliance (CH SEA), announcing the arrival of a new network of social enterprises!

    The launch event is on 17 November, 3pm-5pm at the CHCS offices on the CQU Emerald campus, RM 2.19. 

    At the launch, the group will share Vision, Values and Purpose and membership of the group.  CH SEA is laying a solid foundation for the social enterprise industry in the region and QSEC is very excited to welcome another network to support the continued growth of the sector. 

    You can attend in person or online via Zoom.

    When you register, the Zoom link will be on the ticket. 

    https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/central-highlands-social-enterprise-alliance-launch-tickets-202742457147?utm-campaign=social&utm-content=attendeeshare&utm-medium=discovery&utm-term=listing&utm-source=cp&aff=escb

    Please feel free to send the above link to your networks and anyone you think may be interested so that we can continue to build our strong social enterprise industry. 

    We looking forward to seeing everyone there to support this new network!


  • 01 November 2021 2:29 PM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    Don't miss the Social Finance series beginning THIS WEEK: Susan Black and Allan English! Tickets: https://www.qsec.org.au/events


    Scaling your business and considering investment products for your business can be a minefield. 

    Are you ready to scale? 

    Have you got the right levers in place?

    What kind of finance suits your business needs? 

    How can you prepare yourself to be ready for investment opportunities? 

    This 6 week series is designed to help social enterprises understand the steps involved in becoming Investment Ready and identify opportunities, benefits and risks associated of the various investment options.

    Lead facilitator: ImpaQt Qld content based on the Impact Investment Playbook.

    Join QSEC and ImpaQt Qld, alongside the leading social finance providers and experts for a deep dive into social finance.

    Format: Online one-hour sessions with providers and mentors and a take-away FAQ/worksheet to help get your business ready for impact investment.

    Additional support: Social Finance Forum on the QSEC member portal for general guidance and support.


  • 01 November 2021 2:25 PM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    QSEC members should check their in-box and the forums to get $10 discount to attend the 2021 SESNA event.

    Full program and tickets:

    https://events.humanitix.com/sesna2021-beating-heart-social-enterprise

    At this year's digital Social Enterprise Summit for Northern Australia, hear from business leaders from the region such as Liandra Gaykamangu (Founder Liandra Swim and co-CEO Enterprise Learning Projects), Elena Wangurra (Founder of Queenmode), Natasha Short (Managing Director, Kimberley Jiyigas), Flora Warrior (Founder and Coordinator Mabuiag Island NILS Program), Bianca Stawiarski (Managing Director, Warida Wholistic Wellness) and MORE. 


  • 21 October 2021 11:50 AM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    The Lord Mayor launched the Women in Business Grant 2021 to provide funding to support female business owners to grow and develop their business. A total fund of $250,000 is available to provide eligible organisations with the help to build their business capability and thrive.

    The grant is now open for applications and will close on Thursday 9 December 2021.

    Women in business are key to the success of the local economy, representing up to 35% of small business owners. This grant will:

    • Support women in business to thrive and grow with confidence
    • Provide a business community of like-minded experts for networking and collaboration
    • Boost the local economy through skill development and local buy

    MORE DETAILS 


  • 21 October 2021 9:49 AM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    Recognise those dedicated to positive social change

    Impact 25 winners spend their days advocating on the issues of the time, usually working over years and even decades to generate positive social change and support communities of interest. 

    These extraordinary people take action in their communities and influence the lives of those around them, sometimes without recognition or thanks.  

    The Impact 25 Awards were developed to create a platform to celebrate these people who embody the values of the social sector as Influencers, Collaborators and Innovators. 

    In these challenging times, never have those qualities been more important and these awards are an invitation to recognise them.

    You can help change that by celebrating and amplifying the stories of people from across Australia who are shaping the world to be a better place. 

    It only takes ten minutes to recognise a life of impact!

    CLICK HERE TO Nominate now!


  • 20 October 2021 11:13 AM | QSEC Admin (Administrator)

    A Workforce Innovation Network event exploring inclusive practices for attracting, recruiting, and retaining employees with disability.

    As an Industry CSIA know the social and economic benefits of hiring people with disability – increased innovation, productivity and effectiveness in business.

    But how do we become a leader in this space?

    Hear from the experts at this online event as we explore inclusive practices for attracting, recruiting, and retaining employees with disability.

    Walk away with insights and tools you can implement today to create more inclusive hiring practices.

    Be part of the conversation around what we can do as an Industry to be a leader in this space.

    More Details 



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