Programs and Initiatives

Sprout Community

Learn to develop creative, community-focused projects

Economic downturn, environmental degradation, the social impacts of technology, and the changing nature of work can often leave us feeling helpless in the face of large-scale, global trends. In the face of large-scale, global trends, does the individual person have power?

We believe individuals have the power to change our world for the better, and that we do so best when we work together.

The Sprout Community program (formerly known as the Sustainable Impact Mentoring, or SIM, program) empowers emerging leaders to create positive impact through developing creative and innovative projects that meet local needs. The program takes participants through a deep, immersive process to research their understanding of a chosen problem and get to know the proposed beneficiaries of a project, before attempting solutions. Over a six-month period, participants take part in a series of monthly workshops on applying the Human-Centred Design (HCD) approach to their chosen problem, meet with assigned mentors, and undertake reflective practices that help make the connections between sustainable living, leadership, and taking focused action.

Participants will:

•    learn to apply the HCD approach that challenges conventional thinking about designing solutions;

•    experience conceptualising, incubating and implementing a project;

•    engage with local communities to understand existing needs;

•    develop lasting relationships and grow their own networks;

•    learn from skilled industry professionals through mentoring;

•    leave feeling confident and empowered to create a more sustainable future!

The HCD model can be applied in many different scenarios and can be used to design interventions that meet a wide variety of needs. Past participants have created viable businesses and community projects in many different fields, including eco-tourism, garden design, workplace wellbeing, plastic waste reduction, and digital technology in water infrastructure maintenance.

Learn more about HCD.

Program News

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Shannon and Anvita present their Sprout! Community project
08-Oct-2019

Participants in the Sprout! Community Program presented three inspiring local projects at a public showcase in Melbourne.

Sustainability Showcase at Armagh
19-Oct-2018

Participants in the 2018 cycle of the Sustainable Impact Mentoring (SIM) program presented their projects on 8 September at Armagh, and reflected o

04-Jul-2018

The first Sustainability Fair at Armagh features planting day in the organic community garden, and a public showcase of community projects led by S

03-Jul-2018

The Sustainable Impact Mentoring (SIM) program is for people who are passionate about making a change, but don't know where to begin.

02-Jun-2018

Jean, a waitress at a café in Melbourne, noticed customers' use of plastic bags and takeaway cups.

02-Jun-2017

Gwendoline and Azain Raban have started an Initiatives of Change programme pairing mentors with individuals who are developing projects for a bette