Podcasts with purpose

Posted on 08 Jan 2024

By Greg Thom, journalist, Institute of Community Directors Australia


The popularity of podcasts has exploded across the world and the not-for-profit sector has been quick to get on board.

Podcasts offer sector organisations a great way to communicate their purpose, talk about their expertise and share inspiring stories.

With his background in innovation, volunteering and NFP board service, the co-founder and director of Impacto Consulting Dan Bentley was quick to see the potential benefits of podcasting.

“Tracey [Newman, co-founder and director] and I started Impacto Consulting just over five years ago, using our expertise in innovation and client experience to work with for purpose organisations to get more impact out of their programs and services,” said Dan.

About two years ago the pair kicked-off the Innovate for Impact podcast.

Dan describes each instalment as a “bite sized episode of inspiration” for anyone in the sector who wants to have a bigger impact in the work they do.

“We share our knowledge and also bring the most innovative leaders from across the not-for-profit and social enterprise world to share their ideas and give an insight into how they are doing what they do,” said Dan.

“We cover some pretty serious topics, but we like the vibe of the show to be light and entertaining, as we know a lot of our listeners are listening to us during their commute, dog walk, gym session or whilst cooking dinner after a long day.

“So, keeping each episode light, entertaining and tightly edited is important.”

Dan said he and Tracey started the podcast because they were keen to share their knowledge as consultants with a broader audience.

“We knew the info we shared with our clients was really helpful so we wanted to expand that out to more people, especially those that for whatever reason can’t work with our business and we thought a podcast could be a good way of doing that.”

Dan Bentley 2
Impacto Consulting director and co-host of the Innovate for Impact podcast, Dan Bentley.

Dan was also keen to encourage listeners to associate innovation with the NFP sector, something they wouldn't necessarily do otherwise.

“When in reality, for those of us that work here, we know it’s (NFP) one of the most innovative sectors going around. So, we are on a bit of a mission to change that perception through the podcast.”

Dan said the podcast aimed to achieve this by inviting sector leaders onto the show and encouraging them to share the innovative things they are doing.

“We hope we can shine a bit of a spotlight on the good work that is happening out there.”

The podcast has racked up more than 100 episodes and has attracted a sizeable cohort of senior leaders of NFPs and social enterprises as guests and listeners.

“About 60% of our audience is based in Australia but we now have a pretty big overseas following in countries like the U.S, Germany, U.K and even Uganda!” said Dan.

Dan believes one of the reasons podcasting has exploded as a medium is that it has become a channel of choice for busy people.

“They often don’t have the time to sit down and watch a one-hour video or read a long article. Podcasting is perfect as it can sit in their ear whilst they are multitasking.”

“We share our knowledge and also bring the most innovative leaders from across the not-for-profit and social enterprise world to share their ideas and give an insight into how they are doing what they do.”
Impacto director Dan Bentley.

Podcasts with purpose

Feel like relaxing over summer with some of the best NFP-focused podcasts on offer? Here's a wrap of our favourites.

Purpose Buzz

“Thought-provoking conversations with inspiring people doing meaningful work” is how podcast creator and author Matt Romania describes his ad-free, self-published podcast.

Listeners can learn the stories of how guests came to be involved in the not-for-profit or charity sector, what they’ve learned from their experiences and how to connect with their causes.

The Secret Life of Carers

Produced by Carers Australia, this podcast highlights the unique experiences of Australia’s 2.65 million unpaid carers.

Tune in to hear stories from everyday people reflecting on their role as a carer; those they support and the services they access.

You can also learn from selfless carers how to become a better carer for those in need in your own life.

The Good Life: Andrew Leigh in Conversation

Not strictly NFP themed, but Charities Minister Andrew Leigh uses his podcast as a vehicle to interview people about living a happy, healthy, and ethical life.

The long list of guests has included author Tim Winton, broadcaster Andrew Denton and swimmer Emma McKeon.

ACNC Charity Chat

A one stop shop for all things charity related brought to you by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission.

Philanthropy Australia podcast

Each episode features a discussion about what's on the minds of the nation’s philanthropists and motivated movers and shakers in the for-purpose sector.

Topics range from advice on how to improve giving in your life to information about Philanthropy Australia events.

Small but Mighty

Crafted by the Small Non-Profits Alliance, this podcast offers expert advice and resources for – you guessed it – small not for profits.

Features include interviews with charity leaders and deep dives on hot topics that are top of mind for many organisations in the sector.

The Village Lantern

“Bringing light and love to families living with hidden conditions” is how this heartfelt podcast aimed at families who have children with neurodiverse conditions such as autism is presented.

Hosted by Anna Oxley Rintoul, the CEO of social enterprise It Takes a Village, the podcast features regular interviews with parents, medical experts and community leaders and offers sage advice on a range of topics.

All this is tied together with thoughtful conversations with co-hosts Charlotte Adorjan and Our Community’s very own Annabel Rattigan.


If the options we’ve already highlighted aren’t enough to sate your for-purpose podcast appetite, check out this extensive list of Australian and overseas offerings curated by Apple on iTunes.

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