In Australia

The xpand Foundation has a commitment to community education to encourage awareness of the significant benefits of social and economic inclusion in building a civil and democratic society. This will be done in a variety of ways.

Projects developed and delivered by the xpand Foundation will increase social and economic participation in order to contribute to an inclusive society that values the sustainable livelihood and happiness of every individual.

Projects that investigate links between the social economy, the green economy and the digital economy will particularly interest the Foundation.

The xpand Foundation is committed to cooperation and support in any not-for-profit project, whether an independent project, a joint project, a project with a specialised focus or a broad focus. The one qualification is that a project aim must be to increase social health.

There are three core areas of activity:

Social enterprise activities

The social economy provides the measure of social and individual health through provision of health, housing, employment, education, income support, research, community participation and justice. The fundamental needs for survival and sustenance are essential for us all, but they are enhanced by opportunities to experience a sound education, self-motivation, the liberal arts and the rule of law.

A key element of the social economy is the vitality of the knowledge economy as opposed to the industrial economy. An informed community is the basis upon which a healthy social economy builds.

The xpand Foundation will engage in social inclusion activities that empower all citizens, and particularly unemployed, indigenous, disabled, refugees, women and young people. The xpand Foundation will promote independent social and economic action and help to establish small and independent social enterprises.

The xpand Foundation will develop not-for-profit enterprises that increase the social health of communities. The xpand Foundation will promote the need for local community ownership of these enterprises so that they deliver social and economic benefits to individuals and the community in which they operate.

The xpand Foundation will also encourage and support sympathetic projects developed by other not-for-profit organisations. It will particularly encourage projects that embrace the reduction of discrimination of all kinds, particularly discrimination on the basis of race, gender or disability.

The xpand Foundation has over fifty years of combined knowledge in relation to the start up and ongoing management of successful social enterprises that deliver social and economic benefits to disadvantaged communities.

Digital enterprise activities

The digital economy provides a unique information and education resource that provides an essential technology in our commitment to sustainable global growth. It is a force for innovation and efficiency in all social endeavours.

Civil and democratic societies require that everyone be able to access and share information. In the twentieth century, this meant being able to read and having access to print materials, radio and television. In the twenty-first century, it means having access to information and communications technology or ICT; it means digital inclusion.

The technological revolution is changing the way we live and work.

And no society can survive at the forefront of advanced nations without taking advantage of the communication technologies that emerge as the society develops.

In 2011 the United Nations’ Human Rights Council unanimously supported a resolution that makes access to the internet a human rights issue. The resolution says that all people should be allowed to connect to and express themselves freely on the internet. All 47 members of the Human Rights Council, including China and Cuba, signed the resolution.

While broadband digital access is widely available to people on comfortable incomes, affordable broadband access is essential if we are to overcome disadvantage wherever it is found.

The xpand Foundation will work to break down the digital divide and broaden digital inclusion across the Asia Pacific Region.

Universal access to the internet is now a fundamental infrastructure requirement of any civil and democratic society that espouses equal opportunity, equality and a fair go.

Green enterprise activities

The green economy describes the forces at work to ensure sustainable growth, resource efficiency and biodiversity, now and into the future. Its concerns include reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions, climate change mitigation, food security, protection of water supplies and recycling. Despite lack of universal acceptance, the green economy provides opportunities for economic innovation and job creation in a low-carbon economy.

A key aspect of the green economy is the work to prevent deforestation and forest degradation. Much of this work is being done in developing nations and subsistence farming communities and this is a significant feature of the work of the xpand Foundation

Further essential work must continue on green growth measurement schemes that will establish a value for carbon offsets and carbon credits and facilitate carbon trading.

The xpand Foundation will establish green enterprises in the alleviation of climate change, the maintenance of biodiversity and the evaluation outputs.

The Foundation will also encourage and support sympathetic projects developed by other not-for-profit organisations. It will particularly encourage projects that provide theoretical and experiential education in the environmental sciences, particularly encouraging problem-based learning programs like those being developed in partnership with the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria.

WithOneSeed is a school-based education activity of xpand Foundation developed in partnership with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Victoria. The curriculum and activities are designed to broaden knowledge and awareness about the carbon cycle and provide practical resources to increase student awareness of how computer technology is significantly contributing to climate change. Students will focus on the individual cost of technology use and how to take action.

Partnering with the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria brings significant educational and environmental acumen in the delivery of high quality innovative programs with both theoretical and hands-on elements. The WithOneSeed Universal Education project is based on this.

WithOneSeed’s education curriculum examines the theories of the carbon cycle through student participation in three core elements. A practical hands-on experience, a project focused activity in the classroom and a school-based activity to assess each student’s technology footprint.

Time allocation for xpand Foundation activities

The activities of the xpand Foundation are project oriented and therefore it is not possible to provide an exact calculation of the time each activity will require. However, it is anticipated that the time allocation will be approximately one third of work to each activity area.

It is planned that 100 per cent of the xpand Foundations time will be spent focused on the three areas of activity described above.

Activities conducted outside Australia

The xpand Foundation’s overseas objectives are the same as the Australian objectives. To increase social and economic inclusion of disadvantaged individuals and their communities so as to:

  • reduce poverty and hunger
  • improve standards of living and working
  • advance universal education
  • foster environmental sustainability
  • support universal access to new communication technologies
  • support safe and inclusive communities
  • empower local communities to own their initiatives and shape their own futures.

The xpand Foundation offers consulting services and mentoring support to two social enterprise initiatives in Timor Leste. This work is carried out on a consultancy/expenses paid basis and involves country visits at least twice a year and internet-based teleconferencing on an as needed basis. The xpand Foundation makes no financial outlay on activities outside of Australia and requires any out of pocket expenses to be covered by the in-country organisations.

The xpand Foundation currently supports two not-for-profit enterprises in Timor Leste.

Info Timor is the first social enterprise trading in Timor Leste with a focus on technology for social justice.  Established in 2006 it has established two technology workshops and training centres, one in Baucau and one in Suai.  Info Timor has three business activities. It refurbishes computers making them available to schools, NGOs and the community. It provides internet services using satellite and wireless mesh networking technology. And it provides certificate level ICT training under its Registered Training program.

WithOneSeed supports subsistence communities in Timor Leste to make environments sustainable, to end poverty and hunger, to deliver universal education and to create global partnerships.  This is done by assisting vulnerable rural communities adapt to climate variability, build local economies, boost education and training and grow stronger, more resilient communities, through village-based reforestation initiatives called Community Tree Cooperatives. WithOneSeed’s foundation project is working with subsistence farmers and school communities in Baguia, Timor Leste