media release

 

19 January 2021

 

Finalists recognised for sustainability, gender equity, diversity and health achievements in inaugural HESTA Impact Awards

 

Eleven finalists were today announced for the first-ever HESTA Impact Awards, recognising health and community services professionals taking positive steps to create a better world.

 

Finalist achievements covered sustainability, gender equity, health and diversity and inclusion initiatives, including a hospital-wide recycling program, health literacy sessions for culturally and linguistically diverse communities and a free online career support program for women in need.

 

HESTA CEO Debby Blakey said she was impressed with the calibre of the finalists, who are in the running to share a $30,000 prize pool.

 

“Our health and community services professionals care about the future of our society, economy and planet and do incredible things every day to make the world a better place,” Ms Blakey said.

 

“These finalists are improving social and financial outcomes for women, preventing a phenomenal amount of waste from going to landfill and going above and beyond to improve health and wellbeing of people experiencing disadvantage.

 

“HESTA is so proud to help share and celebrate their life-changing stories and achievements. They are true heroes.”

 

An independent judging panel will select the winners of the three categories – Team Innovation, Outstanding Organisation and Individual Distinction – who will each take home $10,000 to help them continue their work to create a better and more sustainable future.

 

Launched last year, the Awards were inspired by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a global blueprint for making measurable progress to tackle world challenges, including ending hunger, inequality and reducing climate change, by 2030.

 

Ms Blakey said HESTA has chosen seven of these SDGs to guide the Fund’s decision making and activities and to support the continued delivery of strong and sustainable long-term returns for members.

 

“HESTA is committed to making the world a better place for our members to live, work and retire into and we are proud to have been the first major Australian super fund to commit to a total portfolio ‘net zero by 2050’ emissions target,” she said.

 

“The HESTA Impact Awards tie together the work we do in pursuit of our chosen SDGs through our advocacy, responsible investment and thoughtful stewardship of our members’ savings.”

 

The Award winners will be announced on Wednesday 24 February 2021 via a live, public broadcast.

 

For more information, visit hestaawards.com.au

 

The 2021 finalists are:

 

TEAM INNOVATION

 

The Living Room

Youth Projects Ltd

Melbourne VIC

Area of impact: Improved health outcomes/improved patient wellbeing

Youth Projects is recognised for going above and beyond to provide people experiencing disadvantage with access to essential services through ‘The Living Room’ health initiative.

 

YWCA Asista Program Team

YWCA Australia

South Melbourne VIC

Area of impact: Gender equity

YWCA Australia’s Asista Program team is recognised for their life-changing work to help young women and girls in the child protection system build leadership skills and drive positive change.

 

Bendigo Health Facilities Management Team

Bendigo Health

Bendigo VIC

Area of impact: Sustainability

Bendigo Health’s Facilities Management Team is recognised for their outstanding work to implement a comprehensive, hospital-wide recycling program, cutting down drastically the amount of waste going to landfill.

 

OUTSTANDING ORGANISATION

 

Housing All Australians Ltd

VIC

Area of impact: Sector-wide partnerships

Housing All Australians (HAA) is recognised for their innovative ‘Pop Up Shelter’ initiative, which focuses on utilising vacant buildings awaiting redevelopment to increase the supply of short-term affordable housing options for people facing homelessness.

 

The Water Well Project

Malvern VIC

Area of impact: Improved health outcomes/improved patient wellbeing

The Water Well Project is recognised for their work to improve the health and wellbeing of communities from migrant, refugee or asylum seeker background by increasing health literacy.

 

Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services

Mirrabooka WA

Area of impact: Improved health outcomes/improved patient wellbeing

Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services is recognised for providing inclusive, holistic and culturally sensitive services for refugee and migrant women.

 

Big Group Hug

Bundoora VIC

Area of impact: Sustainability

Big Group Hug is recognised for their work to support families in need while minimising environmental impact.

 

INDIVIDUAL DISTINCTION

 

Jodie Bergsma

Dress for Success Sydney

Marrickville NSW

Area of impact: Diversity and inclusion

Jodie Bergsma is recognised for her exceptional leadership in supporting women to find employment through Dress for Success Sydney’s career support program.

 

Julia Claire Hales

My Place WA Ltd. and Black Swan State Theatre Company

Subiaco WA

Area of impact: Diversity and inclusion

Julia Claire Hales is recognised for her leadership in changing perceptions of people with disability, particularly Down Syndrome, through arts and culture.

 

AJ Williams-Tchen

Girraway Ganyi Consultancy

Balwyn VIC

Area of impact: Diversity and inclusion

AJ Williams-Tchen is recognised for his work to support the mental health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, improving their social and emotional wellbeing. 

 

Melissa Browning

Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service

Southport QLD

Area of impact: Diversity and inclusion

Melissa Browning is recognised for her leadership in developing and implementing an innovative and authentic approach to improve racial, cultural and health equity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, building greater understanding and inclusion in Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service.

 

Ends.

 

Media contact:

Sam Riley

General Manager - Media Relations

(03) 8660 1684

 

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