The Community Services sector is changing and small and medium not for profit organisations have been feeling the effect of these changes for quite some time.  We all know that there are even more challenging changes to come.

Part of these challenges will be strengthening the sector, our boards, and our organisations.  This will have improved outcomes on our communities, through improved sustainabiity, governance and accountability of our organisations.

However, the changing environment and discussions on the future must include the expertise and knowledge from an engaged and professional network of boards within the sector.  The Coalition of Community Boards also seeks to be part of any co-designing processes with program and policy makers to ensure  the resiliance, responsiveness, professionalism and capability of community led, place based organisations.

It is important that we work collaboratively, within localities and across Queensland to strengthen our boards, engage in policy and planning discussions, and work with governments and larger organisations for the benefit of our communities.

Stories from the Coast: Turning small dreams into big visions through cooperation (part 2)

By Natalie Alexander as told by Tracy Sharp and Paul Martin (July 2015) The On Track Co-op has held steadfast to its core values of providing quality services and adopting principles of servant leadership. A focus on quality service is made possible because each organisation within the Co-op understands how to serve its own community by collaborating. There is a strong commitment to being ‘people driven’ and actively empowering the people they support. The Co-op’s success in providing quality, people-driven services is also linked to a style of leadership known as servant leadership. First coined by Robert K Greenleaf (1970), servant leadership invites leaders to aspire to lead through the practice of serving others to create a more just and caring world. As the Co-op seeks to operate on a consensus basis, this means that people can be both servants and leaders within their organisations. As quoted by an On Track Co-op manager: “We do not want to be kings of our organisations but listen to the people at the grass roots, which means you have to step down from the realms of CEO or manager.” There’s some truth to be held in that statement and it’s no wonder the Co-op is right on track when it comes to meeting the needs of their own community. The Creekside project With the desire to serve their community well and turn small dreams into big visions, two members of the Co-op have purchased a commercial building, known as Creekside. The projects that will operate from Creekside will create a new and exciting direction for the Co-op. Based in a derelict building,... read more

Stories from the Coast: Turning small dreams into big visions through cooperation (part 1)

By Natalie Alexander, as told by Tracy Sharp and Paul Martin (July 2015) Small community organisations are currently facing increasing pressure to remain viable under the threat of a rapidly changing sector. The stressors are evident for community workers who provide services to the most vulnerable citizens in our community. Disability services in particular are preparing for major changes to the way services are to be provided with the roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The question is: how will small disability organisations remain viable in such a different environment? The vision for community is becoming increasingly restricted with funding cuts and new demands, forcing community organisations to respond and adapt accordingly. This is often complex work, requiring the careful balance of striving for viability while holding steadfast the true values of community. Long-standing members of five community organisations on the Sunshine Coast have demonstrated that working collaboratively to strengthen viability is key to overcoming the current challenges within the sector. They have established a formal cooperative, and the collaboration process demonstrated between the five organisations has sparked innovative planning and partnerships. By committing to an authentic and creative process of collaboration, they are not just surviving but are now thriving. The purpose of the co-op’s partnership was to better coordinate quality support for people with disability and their families and to prepare for the NDIS. The On Track Co-op partners include: An intentional process to share and collaborate The impetus for partnering together came about in 2012 when members of the organisations attended a workshop on community collaboration, presented by Eileen Hayward. All five organisations... read more

Invitation: Strengthening Regional Social Infrastructure

Regional communities are often removed from the decision making which impacts on social infrastructure: services, facilities, and collaborative planning and development processes. In a time when regional economies are in decline, the critical link between economic growth and social development is as important as ever. Local organisations in the Whitsunday, Isaac, Mackay region are co-designing collaborative processes for innovative service delivery in remote, rural and regional communities. An outcome of this work, the WIM Region’s Social Infrastructure Protocol document will be launched at the Forum. It aims to give the region a stronger voice and has relevance for other parts of Regional Australia.   Monday 20 June 2016 9:45am for 10:00am-1:00pm Reception Room, Mackay City Council, Sir Albert Abbott Administration Building 73 Gordon Street, Mackay RSVP by Thursday 18 June by registering here or call Helen Styles 0448 573 049 INVITATION Strengthening regional social infrastructure forum ... read more

Community Development Conference 2015

The Community Development QLD Conference is on again, and we are pleased to be running our own day of knowledge sharing and development for boards. Co-Creating Community Structures is a workshop for management committee/board members, staff,concerned volunteers and community members to explore how things are already changing and to discuss what we – collectively- want to see. When:  4 – 7 November 2015  (single or multiple day tickets available) Where: Griffith University, Meadowbrook, Logan Bookings and more info: www.logan.qld.gov.au/cdconference    FULL COCB DAY PROGRAM COMING SOON >>... read more

Ann Ingamells - Coalition of Community Boards

by Kim Klein | ABC Radio | Ann discussing issues surrounding community centres

Byron Mulligan Ann Ingamells - Funding the Community Sector

by Steven Rigall | 4ZZZ Radio | An open letter to the Community Sector