Connection, Creativity, Community: Finding Hope in a Climate of Crisis

16 – 17 Nov 2020


Online Streamed live (AEDT)

Against the odds, the 2020 Communities in Control conference was one of the liveliest ever.

An annual highlight of the calendar for community leaders – normally held in Melbourne in May – the two-day event was forced online by COVID-19 this year and rescheduled for November 16–17.

Any doubts about whether the online conference would generate the buzz delegates have come to expect were quickly quashed as 600 enthusiastic participants tuned in from every corner of the nation alongside a handful of friends from over the Tasman.

The opening minutes saw a tsunami of insight, fury, optimism, action, intelligence and emotion – and that was just delegates diving into the live conference chat.

From Uncle Jack Charles’ welcome to country to the rousing Joan Kirner Social Justice Oration by Paul Bongiorno, every contribution from the 17 speakers and hundreds of delegates built on the promise and premise of the event: that when communities are in charge of their own destinies and are able to set their own priorities, Australia is a happier, healthier and livelier place.

When Our Community group managing director Denis Moriarty took to the stage from Our Community House in North Melbourne, on Wurundjeri country, his address set a tone of hope rising from despair.

“This year’s conference title is ‘Connection, Creativity, Community: Finding Hope in a Climate of Crisis’, and when we settled on that title last October, little did we know what further crisis was about to hit us,” Mr Moriarty said.

“And throughout this whole series of crises, when it sometimes seemed that hope was nowhere to be found, I remembered we had Communities in Control coming up, and that it would be the best place in the world to find hope – amongst like-minded souls who had a passion for people and society.”

Our full summary features the wit and wisdom of more speakers and performers, including:

Read full conference wrap
Download the program

Conference highlights

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