• A professional development experience for teachers like no other

    The SVA Bright Spots Schools Connection International Exploration was the most valuable professional development exercise these teachers have ever experienced.  

  • Five ways educators can create high performing teams

    Last month’s SVA Bright Spots Schools Connection Thought Leadership Gathering (TLG) saw an impressive group of successful and emerging leaders from schools across Victoria come together to reflect on their role in creating high performing teams.

  • How technology is being used to share and preserve First Australian languages

    A look at the ALNF's language app

    The Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation is working to strengthen and preserve Indigenous languages in Australia.

  • People and purpose: what made SVA’s staff offsite a success

    2017 SVA Offsite all staff photo

    For the whole Social Ventures Australia team, the SVA offsite is a chance to reconnect with each other, and our shared purpose.

  • The Aspire Program: finding vulnerable people a place to call home

    In August this year, John stood in front of his new home in Adelaide, overwhelmed. John had a long history of homelessness. The 49-year-old had been bouncing between temporary accommodation, sleeping on the street, and in cars. He had finally found a home.

  • Spotlight on STEM education as students and school leaders head to Parliament House

    Logan Skilling and Brianna Dewar, year 10 students from Wirreanda Secondary School in South Australia, were among the 53 students who took part in the 16th Thought Leadership Gathering in Canberra. Here they share their reflections on their experience.

  • Lift off on STEM skills for SVA Connection students

    Launching science experiments into space is just one of the exciting possibilities the SVA Bright Spots Schools Connection is opening up for primary school students from disadvantaged communities. SVA Project Officer, Education, Susannah Schoeffel explains.

  • Case study: Marnin Studio’s measurement journey so far

    As we begin the second year of our partnership with Marnin Studio and reflect on the first year’s progress, one of the areas that has been slower to progress than anticipated has been the development of the Studio’s outcomes measurement framework, systems and practices.

  • Dismantle – How our Venture Philanthropy Partnership is Trialling a New Regional Delivery Model

    In April we announced Dismantle as the newest venture in the WA venture philanthropy portfolio. Since then, we have been working closely with the Dismantle team to plan, structure and coordinate what is a very exciting and innovative venture partnership.

  • How two days in Adelaide can spark a raft of ideas for school leaders

    Bringing together diverse perspectives on the topic of partnerships, the 15th Thought Leadership Gathering (TLG) gave participants a wealth of actionable insights to explore in their own contexts. Here we talk to three attendees to find out which aspects of the TLG delivered the most value for them.

  • Talking measurement at the Social Impact Festival

    Social Impact Festival 2017

    It’s an exciting few weeks for social impact in Perth with the Social Impact Festival now in full swing. SVA presented the ‘Back to Basics – Beyond Funding and Reporting’ session, one of two sessions on outcomes management that SVA is presenting at the festival.

  • The importance of a client-centred approach for working in the social sector

    Associate Consultant Jonathan Finighan recently he had the privilege of working with Indigenous social purpose organisation Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa. This work caused him to reflect on the importance of being ready to listen and ready to learn when conducting an assessment of the Martu Leadership Program, an education and development program designed to build capacity and create opportunities in remote Western Desert Aboriginal communities.

  • Queensland celebrates growing momentum in philanthropy


    An atmosphere of generosity and excitement prevailed at this year’s QCF Philanthropy Week. SVA’s Queensland Venture Philanthropy Manager Dina Jak reflects on some of the highlights, including former SVA CEO Michael Traill’s inspiring speech at the QCF Philanthropist of the Year Awards.

  • Vanguard Laundry Services: creating more than ‘just a job’ for Australia’s long-term unemployed

    Vanguard Laundry Services

    By providing jobs and training opportunities, Vanguard Laundry Services is offering people not just a pathway to financial independence, but the chance to reclaim their lives. Addressing SVA supporters at a recent partnerships event, founder Luke Terry gave insights into the work of Vanguard and some of the people it’s touched.

  • BackTrack – giving kids a second chance

    The latest addition to SVA’s national Venture Philanthropy portfolio, BackTrack is a great example of multifaceted services – education, health, employment, housing and justice – working together to support the needs of young people. Founder Bernie Shakeshaft explains more about the program’s approach and how it’s putting hundreds of Australia’s most vulnerable youth on the road to a brighter future.

  • Am I an evidence broker? reflections on a trip to North America

    I hope Australian educators and people in education systems will find some of these ideas and insights useful, informing the way they think about their role in relationship to research and to schools.

    In this article, John Bush provides insights into the study of research use in education, which has informed the thinking for Evidence for Learning (E4L), incubated by SVA. In February John presented at the William T. Grant Foundation’s annual Use of Research Evidence meeting in Washington, D.C. He shares his learnings in this blog to assist Australian educators and system leaders as they think about using research evidence to improve policy and practice.

  • Bridging the STEM divide

    The 14 schools representing The Connection’s innovative new STEM program are already shaping the course of STEM education in schools serving challenged communities. As SVA and Samsung prepare to grow this potential, we spoke with one of our dynamic principals to hear how her school is integrating STEM in authentic ways.

  • Making progress: One school’s journey from struggling to high performing

    Associate Director, Dr Tanya Vaughan spent time working with the UK-based Education Endowment Foundation. During her trip she visited one disadvantaged school, demonstrating how evidence can be used as an enabler in learning to ensure each child can progress for continuous growth.