Peter Kenyon is a social entrepreneur and community enthusiast. Over the last decade he has worked with over 1000 communities throughout Australia and overseas seeking to facilitate fresh and creative ways that stimulate community and economic renewal. He is motivated by the desire to create healthy, caring, inclusive, sustainable and enterprising communities.
Peter has had a background as a youth worker, teacher, youth education officer and tertiary lecturer. His employment experiences have also included Director of Employment in Western Australia, Manager of the Community Employment Development Unit in New Zealand and Coordinator of the Natal Kwazulu Job Creation and Enterprise Strategy in South Africa.
Peter became convinced that one cannot develop communities from the top down or from the outside in. It required communities to build from the inside out, and for their residents to invest themselves, ideas, assets and resources in the process. Subsequently, he created the Bank of I.D.E.A.S. (Initiatives for the Development of Enterprising Action and Strategies) in 1991, to promote such a paradigm shift and assist with the necessary facilitation, ideas and skills.
Peter's consulting work has resulted in assignments in 45 countries and all states of Australia. During 2004 - 2006, Peter spent time in six Middle East countries assisting with the development of national youth policies and strategies. Peter has authored 16 publications within the fields of community and economic development, youth policy development and youth enterprise including the following diverse set of titles:
- Creating Better Educational and Employment Opportunities for Rural Young People
- Youth Enterprise Matters: Involving Young People in their Economic Futures
- Survival and Revival in Rural Australia
- Taking the Lead: a Community Resource Kit for Local Economic Development
- The Small Town Renewal Kit
- Youth Policy Formulation Manual
- Good Enough Never Is – The Stories of 20 Exceptional and Inspirational Businesses in Rural and Remote Australia
- Building the Future Through Enterprise – Stories of Successful Indigenous Enterprises and Entrepreneurs
During 2006, his current professional positions illustrate Peter’s diverse interests in community, youth and economic development. They include:
- Master Consultant for the Business Retention and Expansion Program in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
- International consultant for the formulation and implementation of National Children and Youth Strategies for Bahrain, Yemen and Somalia.
- Project Director for C.R.E.A.T.E Initiative (Creating Rural Entrepreneurial Attitudes Through Education) and a facilitator for r u MAD? (Are You Making A Difference?) program.
- Program consultant with the Community Planning Initiative of the Municipal Association of Victoria.
- Consultant with ABC Television regarding a TV series on rural revitalisation.
- Board Member of Fairbridge Western Australia (youth organisation).
- Lecturer in Planning for Economic Development, Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Curtin University.
- Keynote Presenter at 15 conferences in Australia, USA, Canada and New Zealand.
In 2003, Peter was awarded a Centenary of Federation medal for services to ‘Community Development in Rural Australia’.