Why the Thriving Communities Partnership?
According to the Legatum Prosperity Index 2016, while overall global prosperity is growing, Australia’s national prosperity is in decline. Recent research tells us that both financial and social inequality are growing in Australia, leading to greater vulnerability. Despite an estimated $500 billion being spent annually on health, welfare, education and housing, millions of Australians are still living in, or on the edge of, financial vulnerability or poverty.
As our population grows and economy shifts gears, it’s becoming harder for everyone to experience “a fair go” and achieve a quality of life that allows them and their families to thrive. This matters to all of us on several levels: our health and life expectancy, our social and economic participation, financial resilience and the ability of our businesses to grow and prosper sustainably.
A business problem
For businesses in particular, the impacts of growing inequality include:
- Greater volatility and crisis coupled with declining levels of public trust in institutions, including business
- Increasing rates of customer hardship and vulnerability driving up cost to serve and debt
- Greater demand on vulnerability support services putting upward pressure on taxes
- Increased complexity in the regulation landscape
- Growing stakeholder expectations for responsible businesses to drive solutions
- Impact on front-line workers who deal with increasingly complex and confronting customer situations.
Complex problems call for collective action. The Thriving Communities Partnership brings together diverse thinking and practice from leading Australian organisations. Benefits for members include:
- Enhanced customer trust through access to leading policy and practices to grow inclusion and tackle vulnerability
- Increased capabilities in responding to issues of vulnerability and inclusion
- Reduced risk by protecting your people and strengthening your reputation
- Operational efficiencies by adopting leading practice and being part of a national referral network of services and support organisations. Planning together for maximum impact
- Shared accountability for systemic issues through transparent conversation between business, government, regulators, ombudsman, and community
- Network and partnership opportunities with leading organisations
- Connection to the most up to date, responsible business initiatives and content around vulnerability and inclusion.
How the TCP operates
The TCP will provide Australia’s first centralised platform for collaboration, learning, research and projects that advance organisational contributions to combatting customer vulnerability and hardship. Features include:
- A Secretariat function, hosted within Yarra Valley Water, to mobilise, co-ordinate, measure and communicate collective impact
- A website and collaboration platform for members to drive collective insight and action
- A single source of information about initiatives contributing to addressing vulnerability and building inclusion across Australia
- Regular workshops, events and reporting to drive connection and progress
- A member management system that will enable a directory of who is doing what
- An Advisory Committee that provides member access to leading expertise.