hands together in group

The Lady Musgrave Trust Youth Advisory Committee (YAC)

By | Blog, News

The Lady Musgrave Trust is establishing a Youth Advisory Committee (YAC) as a support group for the Board.  The innovative and strategic thinkers on the YAC would provide insight into a different perspective from the viewpoint of young people that would benefit the Trust’s various business functions.

Our search has now commenced for appropriate candidates, starting with a Chair.

Role of the Youth Advisory Committee

  • Periodic attendance at Board meetings (probably quarterly) to understand the strategic direction of the Board and report on outcomes from YAC discussions (YAC members will not have voting rights at Board Meetings they attend)
  • Work with the Fundraising Committee to generate and consider ideas for potential fundraising activities and provide input from the YAC perspective
  • Work with the Trust’s Marketing & Promotions service providers to enhance the use of social media options to promote the work of the Trust.
  • Generate suggestions as a group for consideration by the Board in relation to opportunities for revenue raising, promotion and advertising, recruitment of future members, training opportunities.
  • Willingness to volunteer to assist at events and to promote the events to others for volunteering as well as assisting in areas where required eg the fitout of new units.

From time to time the Board will request the YAC to undertake specific projects in relation to the activities of the Trust. These projects may include, but not be limited to, fundraising ideas, assistance with work to be done at or around the properties owned by the Trust, research into potential opportunities that are identified, general discussion on key initiatives.

Structure of the Youth Advisory Committee (YAC)

  • YAC will comprise of between 4 and 8 members between the ages of 18 to 30.
  • YAC will be supported and guided by 1 or 2 Board members in the initial stages.
  • Initial appointment would be for 2 years with the option of a further 2 years with agreement from both parties.
  • Position is voluntary with reimbursement of expenses occurred on behalf of the Trust.
  • Members must be interested in the Trust’s work and willing to make a contribution to furthering that work.
  • Members must be willing to volunteer for periodic fundraising or support events to further the Trust’s Members must be willing to be ambassadors for the Trust at events within their age group.
  • Members would be provided with information on the work of the Trust and internal training as required to support their membership of the YAC.

Benefits of joining the YAC

  • Opportunity to develop networks through attendance at events
  • Demonstrates willingness to undertake responsibility
  • Opportunity to develop confidence and learn new skills particularly in Board operations which could translate to future opportunities
  • Potential for consideration as a Board member

To be considered for the role, please email with a one-page summary of why you think you should be selected for the role. 

Story Bridge

Monuments across Queensland to shine a light on homelessness for Women’s Week 2019

By | Blog, News

The week of 2-9 March 2019 is Queensland Women’s Week and The Lady Musgrave Trust is once again leading the cause with celebrations, fundraising and an awareness campaign that will see iconic landmarks across the state spring to life in purple lights.

A number of Queensland local councils will light up landmarks and monuments in their cities for the entire week to shine the spotlight on the issues surrounding women’s homelessness in Queensland.

Karen Lyon Reid, CEO of The Lady Musgrave Trust, said there were up to 10,000 homeless women across the state, and it was up to everyone to create a strong and supportive community for all women.

“Queensland Women’s Week is about recognising that we all have a role to play in creating a Queensland community that respects women, embraces gender equality, and promotes and protects the rights, interests and wellbeing of women and girls,” she said.

“We have to come together as a community and support those women who are disadvantaged.”

The week-long festivities will culminate on International Women’s Day (8 March), with the lighting of Brisbane’s iconic Story Bridge in purple and The Lady Musgrave Trust’s SHElter Her Cocktail Party – a ticketed event that raises money for the trust’s activities throughout the year.

“This event is the major annual fundraiser for The Lady Musgrave Trust – a wonderful event people can come along to for a good time while supporting a very important cause,” Ms Lyon Reid said.

“We’re really pleased to have the support of the Queensland Government for this initiative, and we’re delighted to be joined by The Honourable Di Farmer, Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, who is coming along to support the event and the issue on the day.”

The Lady Musgrave Trust relies heavily on this type of fundraising, as well as grants and donations, to do their work – providing accommodation for young women and producing The Handy Guide for homeless women, a directory that lists the details for vital support services across Queensland.

“Disadvantaged women come from all different circumstances,” Ms Lyon Reid said. “But the majority have experienced domestic violence, poverty and or poor mental health.”

“The more people who hear about the important work we do, the more will hopefully reach out to support us and assist to put this guide into the hands of the women who need it most.

“We’re always looking to increase distribution at organisations in local communities, including as many hospitals, shelters, community centres and police stations as possible.”

Queensland Women’s Week is just one out of a full year of activities for The Lady Musgrave Trust that focuses on addressing the issues around women and homelessness.

“This continues our legacy of 134 years of supporting Queensland’s disadvantaged women and assisting women wherever we can.”

Monuments shining a light on homelessness for Queensland Women’s Week 2019:

  • Brisbane City Council – Story Bridge on Friday 8 March, International Women’s Day, only
  • Rockhampton Regional Council – Lights on the buildings in Quay Street + Heritage Façade
  • Southern Downs Regional Council – Town Hall
  • Logan City Council – Water towers and also possibly our main administration building.
  • City of Ipswich – Lighting of Ipswich Civic Centre and Studio 188
  • Mackay Regional Council – Civic Precinct Fountain
  • Moreton Bay Regional Council – The Hub in Caboolture


Photo in header by Sue Whiteman.

christmas gift

Myer Indooroopilly Christmas gift wrapping to raise funds for The Lady Musgrave Trust

By | Blog, Homelessness, News

This Christmas, volunteers from St Peters Lutheran College will be gift wrapping at Myer Indooroopilly to raise funds for The Lady Musgrave Trust.

Thanks to a wonderful group of students, parents and teacher volunteers, Christmas shoppers who buy items at Myer Indooroopilly can have their gifts wrapped for them, on the spot.

All money raised will go towards helping The Lady Musgrave Trust to continue delivering essential services for young homeless women in need.

The 2018 Myer Charity Christmas Wrapping kicks off today, Friday December 7th, until Christmas Eve, with daily gift wrapping from 10.00am to 12.30pm and 1.30pm to 4.00pm – including weekends.

“St Peters Lutheran College, through our Community Hub, are delighted to assist The Lady Musgrave Trust with their Christmas wrapping fundraiser,” says Deputy Head of College Lisa Delaney.

“The wonderful work done by the Trust reflects the College’s values of Care, Dignity and Respect.

“Our community has rallied behind this initiative and we are looking forward to a very successful fundraising venture and to continuing our partnership with the Trust.”

The Lady Musgrave Trust is honoured to have the support of both the school and Myer Indooroopilly over the festive season – which can often be a difficult period for those families in need.

The Lady Musgrave Trust has a long-running connection with Myer Indooroopilly, who have been raising funds through the Myer Community Fund for two years now through regular staff morning teas and who offered the Trust this opportunity for Christmas wrapping.

On the 13th December they will also be hosting a morning tea with the Myer Indooroopilly staff and The Lady Musgrave Trust board members, to celebrate their very generous, recent donation of $25,000.

This will contribute to the cost of accommodation for women and children across Queensland.

The Trust relies on the support of the community to assist women and children in need and deliver such essential services. We are truly grateful for the ongoing support from Myer Indooroopilly to help us make a difference in the lives of those who need it most.

While Christmas is often seen as the happiest time of year, it is also hard for many families. Let’s remember that and support families in need.

Thanks to…

St Peters Myer


Karin Jansma

Human Centred Design a key to the homelessness solution

By | News

by Ruth Knight – QUT – Postdoctoral Research Fellow – The Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies


As nonprofits we seek change, change for our beneficiaries, families and communities. In particular, homelessness is one social challenge we are all seeking to reduce.

But how do we do that in an innovative way? How can we get smarter at developing services and interventions that create transformation for those experiencing homelessness, and for our organisation that needs to be efficient and effective?

One way I believe we can achieve this, is by using Human Centred Design (HCD). What is HCD exactly? It’s is a deliberate process where you listen to, and observe people to understand the challenge from their perspective, then use what you learn as inspiration to develop innovative solutions that are systematically tested and evaluated as it is developed.

It is a continuous process of listening, observing, and learning from those you work with, then collaborating with a wide range of stakeholders such as academia, policy makers, practitioners from across the sector including business. No one should be left out of the process!

Essentially, it’s all collaborating and brainstorming to drive new ideas and innovation, and then putting those innovative ideas into practice.

For an idea of HCD in practice, these are the basic steps you should follow when designing a service or intervention:

1. Talk to people

Talk to everybody, including the beneficiaries, experts that work with homeless people, academics and researchers, and all the different people within your organisation – that could be people from departments like HR, finance and fundraising. It might even be business people and government as well. Get everybody talking to you about the challenge to get a real collaborative viewpoint on the issue and ways to overcome it.

2. Form insights

Form insights from the many different points of view and different perspectives you’ve gained – bring together all that information from the policy makers, service providers, the beneficiaries themselves and more. That’s how you form insights into the real problem. To get to know know what the REAL problem is, you have to drill it all down.

 3. Ideate and prototype

Once you have an understanding of what the real problem is, it’s time to start looking for an innovative solution. Explore what the various solutions might be. Ideate and prototype the concept of a solution, but don’t go spend all your money on it yet if you don’t know it’s right.

4. Test and iterate

Put the solution into practice and evaluate its effectiveness, refining any aspects or barriers to success as you go.

As you can see, HCD crosses the traditional boundaries between public, for-profit, and nonprofit sectors. HCD allows high-impact solutions to bubble up from challenging our assumptions, thinking about social problems in a different way and working more collaboratively with those in the community to achieve better outcomes and collective impact.

I truly believe this process is the way to design an end to homelessness and poverty by bringing creativity, empathy, and innovation to the social sector.


At The Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies we are also currently developing a course for non-profits to learn how to do HCD. For more information, feel free to contact me at or find out more online.

The new Lady Musgrave Trust website

Welcome to the new home of The Lady Musgrave Trust

By | News

Welcome to the new online home of The Lady Musgrave Trust. As Queensland’s oldest charity, The Lady Musgrave Trust was founded in 1885 and has a proud and long history of service. In this time, the Trust has provided accommodation and support assistance to more than 10,000 young women and their children.

This new and improved website and revamped look represents a new chapter for The Lady Musgrave Trust and one that is filled with exciting things ahead. We still have so much more important work to do.

Please take the time to read about what we do, our history and our research on homelessness and young women. Discover more about the services we offer, how your support helps and the many success stories we are happy to share.

On our new site, you’ll also find plenty of information about how to get involved and the various events the Trust is involved in such as our Annual Women and Homelessness Forum, which is we just held or our fabulous ShelterHer Cocktail Party very fast approaching.

The Handy Guide

Another very exciting resource you can find here – and one that we are very proud to offer, free of cost – is The Handy Guide.

This guide is an informative booklet developed by The Lady Musgrave Trust to empower women across Queensland – both in rural and major metropolitan areas – who are without shelter or at risk of becoming homeless.

It is a comprehensive go-to resource developed to help women in need, when they need it most, with the details and listings of vital services such as accommodation, food and welfare, health services, legal assistance and specialist domestic violence support services. It also features a wealth of information on community and employment services, as well as emergency phone numbers.

Looking forwards

Going forward, The Lady Musgrave Trust has ambitions to become a key resource on women and homelessness in Queensland and to continue to be a name that people know and recognise as a hub they can turn to for advice and support.