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Education & Employment

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Lord Mayor's Charitable Foundation is committed to reducing place-based education and economic inequality. 

Despite almost three decades of uninterrupted economic growth, Greater Melbourne has pockets of entrenched socio-economic disadvantage. Where you live affects your education and job opportunities. 

There is great need to further develop our education and training systems to meet the changing nature of work and the influence of globalisation, technology and climate change. 

We support project and policy responses that empower our most disadvantaged communities to increase work readiness and economic inclusion.

The Foundation is working towards achieving the following outcomes (click each one to learn more):

  • Outcome 1: Reduced current and emerging skills and capabilities gaps to improve life and work readiness.

    Where someone goes to school can affect the quality of their education and life opportunities.

    A recent study of NAPLAN results shows Melbourne’s disadvantaged suburbs are dominated by schools ranked below average. Disadvantaged schools have larger teaching shortages, fewer educational materials and offer a smaller curriculum. 

    Additionally, current education and training systems are not delivering the skills and capabilities needed to navigate complex work futures in the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’, where the boundaries between physical, digital and biological worlds are blurring.

    A place-based, collaborative approach is essential to ensuring younger and older people gain relevant skills, competencies and experience to participate in meaningful and secure work.

    The Foundation focuses on the potential for technology and education practice to unlock opportunity and reduce inequality.

    The Foundation’s support is focused on:

    • Projects and initiatives that prioritise 21st-century skills and capabilities.
    • Demonstration projects of wrap-around support that creates clear senior secondary school pathways and career exposure, particularly to emerging industries.
    • Community collaborations and industry partnerships for better school-work transitions.
    • Research to better understand the issues and inform policy advocacy that addresses the root causes and drivers of education inequality.

    The Foundation will consider other activities that address this outcome.

    Learn more about this outcome »

  • Outcome 2: Increased economic inclusion, resilience and workforce adaptability.

    The most vulnerable members of our community often face multiple barriers to economic inclusion.

    Where someone grows up influences their job and potential income. Lower skill workers tend to live in more disadvantaged suburbs.

    Globalisation, technology and climate change are also rapidly changing the nature of work, placing economic security at risk, particularly for lower-skilled workers.

    In response, the Foundation focuses on the opportunities presented by emerging transition industries and economic models and systems.

    The Foundation’s support is focused on:

    • Training pathways and job creation, including social enterprises.
    • New models and systems that enable greater economic inclusion and resilience.
    • Community collaborations focused on innovation, entrepreneurship and emerging industries.
    • Research to better understand the issues and inform policy and advocacy that address the root causes and drivers of economic inequality.

    The Foundation will consider other activities that address this outcome.

    Learn more about this outcome »


Does your organisation's work align with the outcomes of this Impact Area?

Learn about our grants and speak to Stephen Torsi, Program Manager - Education & Employment.




Learn more about the issues affecting our community

Our Greater Melbourne Vital Signs Report provides a snapshot of the health, wellbeing and vitality of Greater Melbourne. The report identifies positive aspects of our community, as well as the issues we face, and informs the Foundation's strategy. 

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Key Stats


Students experiencing the most disadvantage can be almost three years behind in their education.


Youth unemployment is up to 15.5% in some areas of Melbourne.


The single largest group on Newstart Allowance are Australians aged between 55 and 64.

Impact Stories