What Can We Do?

Prema Menon

The world might seem like a scary place right now, but it is important to remember that there is a lot of good happening around us. In this podcast, host Prema Menon speaks to social enteprises, charities, not for profits and committed individuals who are all working tirelessly to make this world a kinder, more compassionate and equal place to l

Season 2 Trailer
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All Episodes

Environmental activism is growing steadily, as more of us are getting educated on the perils of climate change. While there is a lot of discussion on how changing human activities and behaviours can help in the fight against environmental threats, the actual solutions for some communities are not this simple. Sofiah Jamil realised this as an environmental activist. In Central Lombok, she witnessed that communities could not be focused on saving trees, when they were struggling for basic access to resources like water.  Sofiah has since left her activism days behind in search of ways to meaningfully help communities in need. She has recently co-founded Pantry Perch, as a side initiative of her main PR & political consultancy business, Hornbills- Concepts and Communications. The aim of this business is to help promote and support brands within the Asian region that are socially responsible.  In this episode, Sofiah talks about why she left environmental activism, what her business Pantry Perch aims to do, and how we can all step out of our bubbles.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Aug 19

19 min

Singaporean and Singapore based artistes operate in a unique arts and culture environment - censorship, government funded grants and mainstream media channels that are mostly operated by state owned subsidiaries. This combination limits the scope of works that are produced. Rishi Budhrani has been navigating this industry for over a decade now as an actor, performer, entertainer and comedian. Rishi talks about how this distinctive landscape has shaped his craft, his latest project The Rishi Report, and how he thinks the industry will evolve post COVID. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jun 23

32 min

Homelessness is Singapore is a topic that is not widely discussed in the country. In recent years, there have been books published about inequalities in Singapore society, as well as academic articles. Liyana Dhamirah's book "Homeless - The Untold Story of a Mother's Struggle in Crazy Rich Singapore" is the first of its kind, told from a first person encounter. Liyana experienced homelessness over a decade ago, and she wrote this book to raise awareness. Today, she is a Befriender for those who are homeless, and helps them navigate Singapore's bureaucratic system to get the aid they need. She also runs her own business, Virtual Assistant Singapore, and employs single mothers. In this interview, Liyana talks about her journey towards getting this book published, the reaction its received, and how fellow Singaporeans can help those who are vulnerable.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jun 14

34 min

There are a range of support services available across Australia to help people fleeing danger or at risk of being vulnerable. However, a lot of the times the burden of rebuilding their lives with essential household items falls on the vulnerable person. The Generous and The Grateful partners with available support services, by connecting household donations with the people that need them for a home. CEO and Co-Founder Carmen Platt talks about why she started this service, the difference it makes, and how all of us should approach helping. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Apr 19

21 min

The world around us is becoming increasingly uncertain. Some people turn to faith at times like these. This special episode is a recording of my conversation with Pravrajika Gayatriprana, President of the Vedanta Society of NSW. A senior Nun of the Sri Sarada Math of the Ramakrishna Order, Pravrajika Gayatriprana talks about how faith and spirituality can help us through chaos. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Mar 25

31 min

Online fundraising is a major source of funds for not for profits and charities. These organizations have faced criticism over the years about how a portion of donations do not go towards those in need. Benojo, led by Pascal Adolphe, is a fundraising platform that's trying to simplify the act of giving for donors and organizations.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Mar 17

18 min

About 7 million tonnes of waste goes into landfills each year in Australia. Guido Verbist and his team at The Bower Reuse and Repair Centre want that to stop. To date, the organization has diverted over 2 tonnes of waste from the landfill, and continue their efforts through repair cafes, education, their stores and by leading campaigns to hold manufacturers responsible. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Mar 8

21 min

Australian content still has a long way to go in terms of representing diverse and inclusive voices, despite years of dialogue and debate. Vonne Patiag is a Filipino Australian filmmaker who has worked in the industry for over a decade. In this episode, Vonne talks about how he found his authentic voice, what it lends to his art, the inclusive practices he used in the making of his web series "Halal Gurls", and how POC content creators are finding their own platforms outside of traditional media. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Mar 1

23 min

Tamil is the third most frequently spoken Indian language at home in Australia. However, there are no formal systems in place to help this language thrive and grow for future generations. The preservation of the language usually falls to families. Vanitha Veerasamy started Vaaranam Children's Books as a way to get her own child engaged in her mother tongue, and as a resource for other Tamil children living in Australia.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Feb 23

20 min

Social enterprises are on the rise, as more and more people feel a call to live with purpose. Tom Dawkins founded StartSomeGood, a crowdfunding platform to lower barriers to ensure as many voices get represented in the social enterprise landscape.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Feb 16

14 min

Human trafficking has become the fastest growing crime in the past few years and experts agree that the problem is getting worse. Dr Abi Foluké Badejo, Founder & Director of Grace + Grit Social Enterprise, implements her research findings to effect social behaviour change, along with providing opportunities and options to survivors in Nigeria and Cameroon. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Feb 9

21 min

LGBTQI+ people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds face multiple barriers in society and in their professional careers. Kamalika Dasgupta, founder of SheQu Group Inc, wants to ensure that LBT+ women of colour in Australia have the tools and resources they need to live their best possible life. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Feb 2

22 min

Lack of digital inclusion affects approximately 2.5 million Australians, 10% of the population. YourLink's co-founder, Richard Scenna, talks about how the social enterprise is working to change this for a particular digitally excluded group - older Australians, seniors, through technology.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jan 26

21 min

Lisa & Zoe Paisley are working with Fijian farmers to increase their income and food security through Aggie Global. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Sep 2019

19 min

Liz Scully and her board members are expanding crisis accommodation services for women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness with the opening of Parramatta Women's Shelter.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Sep 2019

15 min

Megan Etheridge is harnessing community goodwill to support vulnerable women, through Dress for Success Sydney. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Aug 2019

19 min

Anita Howell is cultivating sustainability and spreading compassion with repurposed event flowers, through Perpetual Blooms, in Sydney, Australia. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Aug 2019

15 min

Malin Frick founded Northern Beaches Clean Up Crew, in Sydney, to solve an immediate litter problem on her local beaches. 5 years on, Malin and her Crew are leading the campaign against single-use plastic in their communities and neighbourhoods. ⁠ Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram ⁠

Aug 2019

18 min

As a child, Nina Sackprasith knew she had to help children who were living in poverty. Now a young adult, Nina is turning this belief into a reality, through her homegrown beauty business, Vivre Co Australia.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Aug 2019

12 min

Inspired by his own unremarkable tertiary education in Australia, Julian O'Shea set up Unbound. His organization designs education programs that are more accessible and have real world and sustainable impact for communities across the Asia Pacific region. Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jul 2019

14 min

Rinku Razdan migrated to Australia as a bride. After 7 years, she had to rebuild her life with a 3 year old son, with very little money. Her experience motivated Rinku to start Connections Australia, a multilingual, mobile app that uses data and API to connect migrants and refugees with a community, jobs and settlement information. Website (for show notes and transcripts) whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jul 2019

21 min

Why I decided to start this podcast.  Website (for show notes and transcripts) www.whatcanwedopodcast.com Socials Facebook Instagram

Jul 2019

1 min

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