Emerging Community Leaders to Continue


The Tasmanian Community Fund has committed to continuing to support the Emerging Community Leaders program for the next three years. The TCF has provided a grant to the Community Leadership Institute to deliver the program in partnership with the TCF from 2022 to 2024.

Tony Chapman and Rikki Mawad from the Community Leadership Institute deliver the Emerging Community Leaders program.  The program develops leadership skills in individuals to help their community prosper.

Mr Chapman said they were delighted the program had been extended.

“We’ve seen the impact that it’s made in the lives of those who’ve gone through the program so far, and the subsequent flow-on benefits to their organisations and communities – we’re excited to think this impact is going to continue to grow,” he said.

“The program is providing a variety of leadership and management skills to participants, including strategic planning, media training, budgets and finance, networking, governance, giving and receiving feedback, along with a wide variety of other things.

“As much as there is value in the specific skill development, there’s at least as much value in the personal growth, increased self-awareness, broader outlook, and greater sense of self-confidence that participants gain through the program.”

Participants engage in workshops, forums, group discussions, guest speakers, and also work within smaller teams on a community project.

“It helps unleash the potential of its participants in a way they otherwise might not have had access to,” Mr Chapman said.

“The community sector is such an important part of the Tasmanian community, supporting us as a community in a very substantial way.

“The more we can do to grow the capacity and outcomes of this very broad sector, the more that those in this sector support and benefit.”

Huon local Ally Freudenmann and Tristian Bunker, who works at Hagley School Farm are part of this year’s program, working on a project called ‘Stories on a Plate’ – a booklet of stories and recipes which will share the experiences of culturally diverse Tasmanians.

“It will celebrate the cultural diversity of Tasmania as well as promote understanding and positive connections through the shared experiences of favourite family recipes and stories,” she said.

“Our aim is that this project will increase cultural awareness and help to reduce perceived differences between ethnicities.”

Ms Freudenmann said the Emerging Community Leaders program had provided her with the opportunity to increase her skills and knowledge in community development, as well as meet likeminded people who were dedicated to supporting the Tasmanian community.

“I’ve been able to strengthen my personal leadership skills and form a better understanding of what it truly means to be a great leader,” she said.

“I’ve gained knowledge in areas that I felt I was lacking, such as governance, finance and media relations, as well as strengthened my understanding of topics such as personal leadership strengths, project management, community and conflict management.”

Ms Freudenmann said these skills had helped her within her role as a project coordinator at the West Moonah Community House and in running her own nutrition clinic.

“My confidence as a program manager has vastly increased and I’ve learned how to draw more on the strengths of my colleagues, networks and local community,” she said.

“This program has left me feeling more enthusiastic than ever and I know that all of these new skills and ideas will help me to positively contribute as a leader in my sector and to deliver meaningful community projects that make a real difference.”

Ms Bunker said the Emerging Community Leaders program had helped her build skills around leadership and conflict resolution, as well as build a wider network around community development, sustainability and empowering young people.

“The program focuses on big ideas such as community development, leadership and much more, but the real learning for me is figuring out what makes me tick,” she said.

“I’ve been given the opportunity and support to reflect further around my habits and thoughts so that I can grow in these areas.

“It’s been really challenging at times to be so introspective, but I have already seen substantial improvement in my leadership, communication and confidence.”

Ms Bunker said these skills had helped her develop a larger skillset and recognise what her next steps were in her leadership development as a teacher.

“I now have the support and knowledge to make steps to lead, both from within and with my team at work,” she said.

“I’ve also built on my passion around leading young people to see the best in themselves.

“I’ve created networks that will develop the offerings and programs as well as enhance the way I teach students.”

King Island local Tara Clark is also part of this year’s program, working on a project called ‘Everybody Dance Now!’ – an inclusive dance event which will be held in Hobart and live-streamed so people in regional areas can join in.

“We understand how important human connection is for a person’s individual wellbeing,” she said.

“The vehicle we have chosen for this community event is dance because it promotes physical movement, which is also important for wellbeing, and fun.”

Ms Clark said the Emerging Community Leaders program had provided her with a safe place to explore and apply new skills and concepts.

“I wanted to develop a greater understanding of working in the community, and also to make connections with more people and organisations in Tasmania,” she said.

“I have been able to develop skills and learn more about strategic planning, networking, public speaking and have also had some practical experiences with media training.”

Ms Clark said these skills had helped her develop confidence in establishing Foundations to Flourish, a community wellbeing initiative on King Island.

“The program will inspire you to be the best you can be and help to recognise ways in which to make a positive impact on your immediate community and the wider community,” she said.

“It provides tangible skills and pathways, as well as support networks to pursue professional and personal goals.”

Tasmanian Community Fund Chair Sally Darke said the Board recognised the value of leadership at all levels and across all parts of the Tasmanian community.

“Members of the Tasmanian Community Fund Board were consistently receiving feedback from the community that there were concerns about where the next generation of leaders was going to come from.”

“This was particularly the case for rural and regional communities.

“Recognising this feedback and concern, the Tasmanian Community Fund invested in community leadership development and as a result developed the Emerging Community Leaders targeted grant round and program.

“The Tasmanian Community Fund is particularly keen to see emerging leaders supported to develop skills that will empower and enable them to help their community prosper.”

The TCF provided a grant to the Community Leadership Institute to provide emerging community leadership in partnership with the TCF.

Applications for the 2022 program will open in August and more information can be found at www.emergingcommunityleaders.org