We are very sad to announce the recent passing of Morri Young OAM, CEO of ACWA from 1986 to 1997 and one of our strongest supporters thereafter.
Morri began his a career as a social worker in the child protection system, with the then Department of Community Services (DOCS).
He became known for his passionate leadership in advocating for the not-for-profit sector to play a vital role in driving social reform and in giving a voice to the most vulnerable in our society.
During his time as CEO of ACWA, Morri was very strong in his calls for Government to listen to those with lived experience and to substantially enhance its investment in building the skills and overall capacity of the community services’ workforce.
He was a strong advocate for Aboriginal organisations and was pivotal in the establishment of AbSec. He also played a role in supporting kids leaving care, assisting in the establishment of the precursor to CREATE.
A lifelong entrepreneur and innovator, Morri was also the driving force behind the establishment of ACWA’s training arm, the Centre for Community Welfare Training (CCWT). In a message sent to celebrate CCWT’s 30-year anniversary, Morri described his pride in watching the organisation grow from its humble beginnings, with a calendar of only 12 training sessions, to a major training provider that represented, in his words, “the benchmark for quality training in the family and community services sector.”
On leaving ACWA, Morri continued to support and strengthen the not-for-profit sector through the creation of the capacity-building, training and evaluation consultancy firm, Matrix on Board and later, by establishing the not-for-profit accounting firm, Accounting for Good.
People who knew Morri remember him as a gregarious, quick-witted and eclectic individual with a wide range of interests from the tango to photography. A passionate leader, with an unwavering commitment to making the world a better place, Morri was diagnosed with a rare brain tumour 11 years ago but this never diminished his lust for life or his quest for Social Justice.
We are very grateful for his strong support to ACWA and CCWT over many years — he was always ready to lend an ear, offer advice and share his wisdom.
The sector has lost a passionate and committed advocate and civil society is the poorer with his passing. We will miss him very much.