Captivating audiences with his unique story and passion, George Halkias is an inspiration to many. Having developed the Big Issue Street Soccer Program, George has been instrumental in helping the homeless use the power of sport to change their lives.
George Halkias is a well-respected community figure who has supported vulnerable Australians for almost 20 years.
With post graduate qualifications in psychology, his experience includes managing a state-wide support service for victims of violent crime and training police graduates in the area of victim rights and support.
George is best known for the Big Issue Street Soccer Program which uses soccer to engage and develop homeless and marginalized people. In this role he has coached and coordinated Australian teams at 6 Homeless World Cup events: Edinburgh 2005, Cape Town 2006, Copenhagen 2007, Melbourne 2008, Milan 2009 and Paris 2011, Poznan 2013, Glasgow 2015, Oslo 2017 and Cardiff 2019.
He was instrumental in successfully bidding for and staging the 2008 Melbourne Homeless World Cup and his role included sourcing corporate sponsorship and acting as the public face of the event.
George’s experience with his team in Cape Town was profiled on the ABC’s Australian Story while his Melbourne campaign was documented by Channel 10. He has made countless appearances on television and radio and is a brilliant media performer.
Whilst still involved in the Street Soccer Program which has expanded across Australia, George also acts as a leadership coach, athlete mentor and works with prisoners with intellectual disabilities. He has also developed ground-breaking programs that have addressed the physical inactivity and social isolation of seniors, cares and international students.
A unique speaker, George blends confidence, charisma and passion with insight and knowledge. His sincere and heart-felt presentations make sometimes serious topics stimulating, entertaining and uplifting. His speeches have a huge impact on his audiences and have the power not only to educate but to inspire and motivate people to achieve their best and contribute to society. His fun and interesting stories are drawn from his unique work experience and travels captivating those who are fortunate to listen to him.
George’s presentations have been adapted to different forums that have included business functions, corporate staff development sessions, sporting functions and fundraisers.
George also has vast experience as an MC and facilitator working on some large-scale sporting, corporate and community events.
Managed the Victims Referral and Assistance Service, UN acclaimed service supporting victims of violent crime.
Trained Victorian Police graduates in the area of crime victim services, rights and entitlements.
Co-founded the Big Issue Street Soccer program including developing the program and securing funding to grow the program nationwide (program using sport to support homeless and marginalised people).
Coached and coordinated Australian Teams at the following Homeless World Cup events: Edinburgh 2005, Cape Town 2006, Copenhagen 2007, Melbourne 2008, Milan 2009, Paris 2011, Poznan 2013, Glasgow 2015, Oslo 2017 and Cardiff 2019.
Played key role in successfully bidding for and staging the 2008 Melbourne Homeless World Cup.
Coach and mentor to prisoners with intellectual prisoners (since 2007).
Victorian Sports Award 2017 recognised for contribution to sport and community.