While most of our members in the region are returning to normal life from the COVID-19 pandemic, the second wave unexpectedly has hit Australia hard with hundreds of new cases reported from Victoria every day for over three weeks. The second lockdown has been imposed in greater Melbourne area (where Qianjin is based) with even tighter restrictions than the first wave. As part of the latest Victoria state-level guidelines, mask-wearing has become compulsory, which, also unexpectedly, has generated much public debate beyond the pandemic including some collective reflection on multiculturalism in Australia.
With the pandemic comes additional uncertainty and sometimes extra social tension, which also affects charities as well as other third-sector organizations. Can Australian charities get through this crisis? Find out more about this in a recent report by Social Ventures Australia and the Centre for Social Impact. We have also included specific news and articles about civil society engagement in COVID-19 response at both the national and international levels in this Newsletter.