Hunter business people will have the opportunity in June to hear from an Australian business woman and wife of a former Australian Prime Minister on entrepreneurship, running a successful business and corporate, social responsibility.
Thérèse Rein is the guest speaker at the June 12 Newcastle Business Club luncheon.
Thérèse founded the human services company, Ingeus to help people with disabilities find work. Ingeus then generalised the person-centred, strengths-based approach to working with people who were long-term unemployed. The firm grew from a single person in an attic office to have 6,000 colleagues serving 500 thousand people at any one time in 12 countries around the world.
Newcastle Business Club President, Holly Martin said having Thérèse come to speak in Newcastle was a coup for the Club and an opportunity not to be missed.
“Given the Hunter’s lead role in the launch of the NDIS, our growing reputation as an entrepreneurial region and our solid base in the services sector, I am sure we will have many people from a wide array of sectors keen to attend,” Holly said.
Local businesswoman Shivani Gupta has brought Thérèse to the region. The pair both give their time to the global charity Barefoot College, with Thérèse as its Patron and Shivani a Board Member.
Proceeds from the luncheon will go to support the work of Barefoot College thanks to support from attendees and luncheon sponsors, Hall & Wilcox, GWG Partners and Jirsch Sutherland.
“These three local businesses are to be congratulated for demonstrating corporate, social responsibility by getting behind the event to ensure we raise as much as possible for Barefoot College,” Shivani said.
“A donation of $150 can support a girl to attend school for an entire year and it is just $1,500 to run a school class for a year.”
Thérèse’s business success has been recognised as EY Champion Entrepreneur of the Year and Queensland Telstra businesswoman of the year. In 2010 she was awarded the Australian Human Rights Medal and has had three honorary PhDs conferred. She was the Queensland representative of the Australian Society of Rehabilitation Counsellors and sat on the Board of the National Employment Services Association. She has spoken at OECD forums on employment, particularly of people with disabilities, at congresses of the World Association of Public Employment Services and for other peak global bodies. She studied psychology at the Australian National University, doing her honours thesis on learned helplessness as a model of depression before practicing as a Rehabilitation Counsellor.
Holly said Thérèse walks the talk when it comes to corporate social responsibility. As well as supporting Barefoot, she is also on the Board of the National Apology Foundation and has been patron of not-for-profits in the fields of indigenous literacy, disability, housing, food rescue and arts organisations.
Barefoot College has been operating for more than 40 years. It designs programs, advocates and educates to empower and nurture women, one village at a time, one woman at a time, to lift women out of poverty. Its programs address 14 of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Barefoot’s holistic Enriche Curriculum supports women’s aspiration to transform themselves and their communities. It includes solar engineer training as well as training in water harvesting technologies to help them bring clean water and safe, reliable energy to their communities. It also runs student led night schools for girls who are taken out of education to work to support their families. Today, Barefoot College operates in 1300 villages in 77 countries.
IMAGE | Thérèse Rein is the guest speaker at the June 12 Newcastle Business Club luncheon.