Welcome to the June edition of Building Better Lives Together.

A corporate woman in profile
Lucia Boxelaar, Acting Executive Director

We have certainly seen a better start to the year for 2021 as we look back at where we were this time last year. And as we watch the COVID-19 health crisis continue to impact many others overseas, we have much to be thankful for here in Australia.

However, we cannot forget the many thousands of people that have lost their jobs over the last 18 months and who are still dealing with the longer term impacts of the COVID-19 crisis as they continue to unfold.

Whilst the unemployment rate has improved in recent months, it is still much too high. And with 1.3 million people relying on inadequate unemployment benefits now that the Coronavirus Supplement has been removed, it’s disadvantaged job seekers who continue to be most impacted.

This tax time, money raised will go towards our programs that provide training and employment pathways to those facing serious disadvantage.

In this edition, you will read some inspiring stories from a few of our program participants, volunteers and even one of our very own researchers.

You will hear about the resilience of Olivia, a refugee from Uganda who has faced immense challenges over the last few years, being torn away from her family and home – but through our Given the Chance Program, she has overcome her circumstances and created a better future for herself.

Also featured is Jono, one of our valued volunteers at our Kilsyth Lucia Boxelaar Acting Executive Director Brotherhood of St. Laurence Op-Shop, who began his journey with us three years ago after he became unemployed and realised just how important social connection was to his wellbeing.

And finally, you will meet one of our very own researchers, Dr Emily Porter, who is developing research around the financial impacts of COVID-19 on the community.

As we move through the year, our focus at the Brotherhood of St. Laurence (BSL) will continue to be working with those people in our community that are facing severe hardship and disadvantage to ensure they have the same opportunities as everyone and the resources and tools to empower them to rebuild their lives.

Thank you once again for reading our stories of people making positive change in their lives. Without the compassion and commitment of people like you, our work wouldn’t be possible.

Warm regards,

Lucia Boxelaar
Acting Executive Director, Brotherhood of St. Laurence

Olivia image

Every act of kindness has a positive ripple effect

Your gift today will help someone like Olivia into decent work and give them a chance for a brighter future.

Your support will provide those facing serious disadvantage access to critical support resources, connections to employers and a chance to rebuild their lives.

Together we can ensure no one is left behind.