“Because we can, and we must.”
In 2021, co-founders, Karen Dennett and Claire Seeber came together to not only create an outstanding program with meaningful outcomes, but to dedicate countless hours cultivating a dedicated community of investors, mentors and contributors, committed to empowering, nurturing and celebrating the achievement of our next generation of talented, creative, and yet underrepresented young women.
Let’s talk statistics.
According to the Equality Rights Alliance, The Commission on the Status of Women, the chief policymaking body on women’s rights and gender equality at the United Nations, urges Governments to take transformative actions for the promotion of gender equality and women’s and girls’ empowerment at all levels.
WGEA statistics outline the gender gap in terms of leadership and economic security, with only 17.6% of chair positions, 31.2% of directorships, and just 34.5% of key management personnel. On average, women have less than half the superannuation value of men upon retirement due to taking time out to care for children, and/or parents, and women are more likely to experience poverty.
According to the Australia Human Rights Commission, The Australian workforce is highly segregated by gender, and Australian women are over-represented as part-time workers in low-paid industries and in insecure work, and continue to be underrepresented in private and public sectors.
Furthermore, women take on the majority of the unpaid work, compared to their male counterparts. According to a BBC documentary, women also assume responsibility for the cognitive and emotional load that accompanies bringing up and caring for children and managing the home.
All these statistics and reports can be found online at the Australia Human Rights Commission. They are measures of gender equity that are generously shared on International Women’s Day and discussed at forums and conferences across the world and are raised in Goal 15 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Why did Karen and Claire believe Australia needed a Future Female Leaders’ Program?
Because we can. And because we absolutely must.
The future shift in gender equality starts with our future leaders. It starts with more than just awareness, debate, or counter-productive tick-box activities. It starts by equipping our future female leaders NOW with the critical skills, knowledge, mentoring, real world experiences, social consciousness, and networks to succeed in a complex, uncertain, and ambiguous world. By connecting them with professional expertise and underpinning their learning with a social impact project based on a chosen United Nations Sustainable Development Goal.
We want to move the barriers out of their way now, not have them hit the workplace after school, college, or university unprepared for the true challenges they will be presented with. Karen and Claire wanted to create the program that they wished had been available for them at 16-years old.
How they did it.
Combining the experience and expertise of Karen Dennett, a qualified teacher and Founder of Engaging Education, with a Leadership Expert and women in leadership champion Claire Seeber, Founder of Eating Your Cake Too, the Future Female Leaders Program was forged to include everything that would ensure the program became exceptional, unique, and successful.
A world-class program where businesses and organisations get to invest in their future talent pipeline, financially, with in-kind resources and through professional mentoring. Future focused businesses backing their values of gender equity AND showcasing their industry as a career of choice to talented young female leaders.
After a successful Pilot program in 2021, a room full of professionals were left truly awestruck. You could have heard a pin drop as the first graduates presented their learnings and the achievements of their social impact projects at the inaugural graduation. Presentations that included stories, humour and delivered with a self-assurance that belied the nervous, unsure, and unprepared schoolgirls who commenced the program six months earlier.
Growth and momentum.
The program continues to grow in strength with the new Director of Marketing and Communications, Emma Burdett joining the FFLP Team, the program doubling in size in 2022 with more experiences, and a growing community of supporters, investors, and sponsors.
Sound like the program for you?
If you will be in year 11 (year 10 by exception) next year, and you have a spark of ambition, a desire to lead, and are ready to commit to a life changing six-month program, register your interest, and we will let you know when applications open for our next program.
How can you help?
If you are a professional or business organisation who share this passion for empowering future change makers, find out how you can get involved.