Pinnacle enables young LGBTIQ+ Australians to realise their full potential, overcome challenges arising from their identity, become self-reliant, maintain their dignity and give back themselves. The lasting social and economic benefits for the individual, the LGBTIQ+ community, and wider society are great.
In June 2017, the Mitchell Institute released a study, Counting the costs of lost opportunity in Australian education, which found:
Education opens doors where opportunity and success are determined and is a key predictor of a person’s level of engagement in lifelong work and study. Individuals with higher levels of education have higher‐paying jobs, better general health, and a lower likelihood of engaging in crime. They also gain from a range of family household benefits, such as more effective household management and care of their children’s health and education.
To the taxpayer, each disengaged young person imposes a cost which is equivalent to $411,700 as a current lump sum across their adult years… In terms of social costs, or costs to the broader community, each disengaged young person imposes a lifetime burden which is equivalent to $1,103,700 as a current lump sum.
The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG distils the impact of the Pinnacle program:
There are lots of scholarships and most of them are wonderful investments in the future of admirable young people. But the Pinnacle scholarships are special. They lift-up young people who are not only talented but have often faced dire problems with their families, beliefs and communities. Helping young people to restore confidence in themselves and a trust in the goodness of society that once seemed hostile is something very precious.