Milawa resident Tammy Atkins, and Beechworth’s Sue Gold, work with clients across Australia, using Skype, email and phone to communicate where face-to-face meetings aren’t possible. Their business, It’s On Purpose, supports the launch, viability, sustainability, and growth of social enterprises anywhere, but it’s through teleconferencing and making the most of a range of digital tools that they are able to bring their services to rural, regional and remote areas, something they are both passionate about.
Through a combination of workshops and mentoring, Tammy and Sue help groups to set up new social ventures or take advantage of new opportunities, as well as helping existing enterprises improve what they are already doing or increase their profits. Many of their clients are established organisations and individuals who are looking to social enterprise to solve a community challenge or address a need for services. Between the two of them, Tammy and Sue have worked at all levels of government and across a range of industries, including the health, education, community and not-for-profit sectors.
‘Having lived and worked in rural, regional and metropolitan areas, we’re well versed in the unique challenges facing differing geographic regions, especially those in isolated communities. Of course, we deliver our workshops and Social Change 101 program in person! But much of our one-to-one mentoring, professional coaching and advisory services can be delivered online or via phone if clients prefer,’ Sue says.
Tammy and Sue also have a second project they collaborate on: The Read Team sees them preparing funding applications and business cases for local government, not-for-profits and private enterprises across the country.
‘The way we work means that it doesn’t matter where we’re based,’ Tammy says. ‘We can deliver a grant writing workshop in person and then offer our follow-up services via Skype or telephone. Clients like this approach, as it keeps costs down by eliminating travel. We even have a few clients that we regularly work with and know very well, but who we are yet to meet in person. As a mum of a four-year-old, this approach also means I can do most of my work from my home office on the farm and not have to be away from family too often.’
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