Welcome to the September edition of Building Better Lives Together. As we continue to struggle through the COVID pandemic and continued lockdowns, we must remember how many more in our community are doing it tough.

A corporate woman in profile
Lucia Boxelaar, Acting Executive Director

More and more people are struggling both emotionally and financially.

The unemployment rate is still high, especially for our young people. The youth unemployment rate is more than double that of the general labour market unemployment rate. And it is our young people experiencing disadvantage who are looking for work, who continue to be impacted.

This September, money raised will go towards investing in young people’s talents and aspirations that help them achieve their goals. Our programs assist young people to transition from school to work, including building training and employment pathways for young people who are unemployed and facing disadvantage.

In this edition, you will read about the resilience of Berat, who came to Australia and found it really hard to find work. Through our employment programs, he gained the skills and developed the networks to build a career and positive future for himself.

You will also meet Eden, a young participant of our Transition to Work program, who successfully obtained her Learners Permit, with support of our new partnership with Changing Gears.

Also featured is our special milestone for Saver Plus and the impact this has had on a long-standing participant. You will also read about the launch of our new stretch Reconciliation Action Plan and what that means for our BSL community.

And finally, you will meet Larry, who was struggling with energy bills through this pandemic and was assisted by BSL to apply for the Victorian Government’s new Power Saving Bonus, proving to be a gateway for further support.

At the heart of what we do is supporting people facing disadvantage to find pathways out of poverty and making lasting change in their lives. Thank you for reading our stories and for your passion and commitment to social justice. Without your support, our work would not be possible.

Warm regards,

Lucia Boxelaar
Acting Executive Director, Brotherhood of St. Laurence