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Panel Discussion: The Role of Business in Advancing Women's Empowerment

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Bloomberg

1 Bligh St

Sydney, NSW 2000

Australia

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PANEL DISCUSSION: THE ROLE OF BUSINESS IN ADVANCING WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT

Habitat for Humanity Australia, in partnership with Bloomberg, welcome you to join us for the launch of our Women's Build 2018. The Women's Build is a week-long volunteering stint in Kavre, Nepal, for 100 Australian women to work alongside women and families that lost their homes in the devastating 2015 earthquakes. This build is part of Habitat for Humanity's ongoing efforts to improve the living conditions of the most disadvantaged communities as well as provide financial literacy training to women in Nepal.

Advancing women's economic empowerment is one of the most critical ways of addressing the global gender gap. There are still far too many cases of marginalized women, inequality, and lost potential. We all know that investing in women supports growth. Skilled and educated women, if given the opportunity, make their families and societies healthier and more productive.

However, it’s not only the communities that benefit from empowering women. Economically empowered women can also help businesses reach their own goals for growth and profitability. In a recent survey conducted by McKinsey and Company – 83% of respondents indicated that growth in emerging markets is crucial for their businesses success and that companies that empower women in developing countries are seeing an increase in profits.

So what role do businesses play in advancing women’s empowerment? And what can the private sector do to make a difference?

Our panel will be exploring what women’s economic empowerment entails and specific ways that businesses can contribute to closing the gender gap.

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS

Speaker 1: Joanne Craigie Assistant Director of the Private Sector Development Section, DFAT

Joanne has played a central role in the development of the Australian aid program’s policy and strategy development on engaging with the private sector, in particular, its shared value approach. She has worked on the development of a range of innovative initiatives designed to support the new policies and the intersection between aid and trade, including business partnerships. Joanne has worked on Australia’s aid program for 11 years, and holds qualifications in e-health and information technology, and has owned and operated small business advisory services.

Speaker 2: Sunny Oliver-Bennetts – Community Engagement Manager, Arup

Sunny has over 10 years of experience in facilitating cross-sector partnerships and managing shared-value relationships across the corporate and not-for-profit sectors. Sunny has a PhD in Corporate Social Responsibility and Branding and has held senior roles at Engineers Without Borders and The Big Issue. She assisted in the design of a social enterprise for homeless, marginalized and disadvantaged women - The Big Issue Women's Subscription Enterprise, which was successful in receiving $1.5 million Federal Government seed funding. She strongly believes in empowering women through business as a way to reduce inequality and enhance our overall social, environmental and economic impact.

Speaker 3: Kate Rimer Director of People and Culture, Sparke Helmore Lawyers

Kate sits on the Corporate Advisory Board for Habitat for Humanity Australia. With over 25 years of HR experience in Australia, the UK, and Asia, Kate has held senior positions at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Mallesons, AMP, and Westpac. Kate traveled to Nepal in 2011 and again in 2013 with Habitat for Humanity to build houses for women-led families and can attest to the life-changing impact of the women’s build and how it has benefited both business and women’s empowerment.

MC: Chris Franks M.Mgt, B.A (Statistics), FAICDChair, Habitat for Humanity Australia

Chris is a Fellow of the Institute of Company Directors currently serving as Chair of Habitat for Humanity Australia, currently her key governance role, and was involved in planning and leading both the 2011 and 2013 Women's’ Builds in Nepal.

Chris believes our society is stronger and better managed and governed with women in leadership roles. To that end, she encourages and champions the promotion of women through their careers to senior, CEO and director roles - primarily as the principal of the Women In Aid & Development network across Australia.

Chris’ passion for the international aid and development sector has seen her serve as director or Chair of several agencies and as Chair of the ACFID Code of Conduct Committee, receiving the inaugural ACFID Award for Outstanding Service to the Aid and Development Sector in 2006.

Spaces are limited!

Lucky Door Prize on the night!

Find out more about our women's build here:

http://habitat.org.au/volunteer-overseas/upcoming-builds/womensbuild/?headlineid=9975

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Bloomberg

1 Bligh St

Sydney, NSW 2000

Australia

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