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Dear All,


Many of you may be aware that last year DCJ/FACS undertook a review of the Sector Development Program - the program that funds 14 NSW peak bodies. As a result, a new state peaks program has been established. This will not mean drastic changes, but has led to new program specifications, outcomes and performance measures, and requirements to engage in collaborative planning (with DCJ and each other) and contribute to state and Premier’s priorities. Given there is no new funding for the program, the emphasis on integration of effort and avoiding duplication is important. The new program commences in July 2020, with contract negotiations underway shortly.


Last week DCJ provided peaks with a briefing by the NSW Chief Health Officer on the coronavirus. The ongoing challenges of maintaining service provision and managing staff safety were acknowledged. Key messages for NGOs were to: promote good hygiene practices; ensure that business continuity plans are up to date; and visit NSW Health’s website for the latest information.


NCOSS recently attended Homelessness NSW’s conference ‘Hidden but not Forgotten’ which included a session on NDIS. This highlighted the importance of NDIS supports for people who are homeless or struggling to maintain their tenancy, and how the system works against them. We have advocated on this issue, following Minister Gareth Ward calling on the Federal Government to release unspent NDIS funding. Our advocacy to get the Federal Government to commit to ongoing ERO funding also continues. See our media releases here.


We are pleased to join AbSec’s Family is Culture campaign. This calls on the NSW Government to take urgent action and invest in implementing the recommendations of the independent review by Megan Davis - documenting the failures of the child protection system when it comes to the wellbeing and safety of Aboriginal children, families and communities. You can read more about the campaign below.


- Joanna Quilty, NCOSS CEO



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NSW Community Services and Workers at Risk from Funding Uncertainty

A new survey of community sector employees found services and jobs are at risk if the Federal Government does not guarantee vital funding. Equal Remuneration Order supplementation funding – introduced to provide fair pay – will expire on 30 June 2021, and the Federal Government has not yet committed to extending it. The survey shows 55% of community services in NSW currently receive the at-risk funding. Read more information here or email to share how losing this federal funding would impact your organisation.

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Joint COSS Statement on Raising the Criminal Age of Responsibility

The Councils of Social Service Network made a joint statement to the Council of Attorneys-General (CAG) in response to the review on raising the age of criminal responsibility. The statement highlights that the laws dictating the age of criminal responsibility in all states, territories and the Commonwealth need to be reformed in line with key principles, including that the minimum age of criminal responsibility should be raised to at least 14 years. You can read the full statement here.

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Family is Culture Collective

Currently in NSW, 40% of children in out of home or foster care are Aboriginal. This is nearly 10 times the rate of non-indigenous children and is despite only 5% of children in NSW being Aboriginal. NCOSS has joined AbSec and a collective of over 20 Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal organisations to demand urgent action from the NSW Premier the Hon. Gladys Berejiklian MP to address the over-representation of Aboriginal children and young people in the child protection system. The collective sent a letter to the Premier to ask for a significant financial commitment in the 2020/21 budget to immediately implement the recommendations of the Family is Culture report. Read the letter here: Letter to the Premier: Family is Culture.

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NCOSS Submission on National Consumer Credit Protection Bill 2019

The National Consumer Credit Protection Amendment (Small Amount Credit Contract and Consumer Lease Reforms) Bill 2019 provides important safeguards that protect consumers against unfair credit practices. This submission outlines why these reforms are crucial for people living with disadvantage and provides feedback on how to strengthen key provisions to ensure vulnerable consumers benefit from the full protection of the law. Read more here.


NCOSS Training & Events




Stress Management Course



Time Management For Really Busy People




How to Build a Great Team... We're Better Together!




So You've Made it to Manager... How to Survive and Thrive!




NCOSS & NSW Legislative Council Parliamentary Inquiries Workshop (Western Sydney)

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Sector Professional Development


Connecting Up Launches Online Courses Library

In partnership with TechSoup Courses, Connecting Up now brings you access to an online library full of courses you can study at your own pace. With a mixture of free and paid modules, Connecting Up Online Courses is the next step up in the evolution of the Digital Learning program.

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Embracing the Changes Needed for Your Event - 19 Mar 2020, Parramatta


Associations Forum Pty Ltd
Embracing the Changes Needed for Your Event
19 March 2020, 4.00pm-7.00pm
PARKROYAL Parramatta, 30 Phillip St, Parramatta

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7 Copywriting Story Tactics that Inspire Connection - 19 Mar 2020, Online


Connecting Up
7 Copywriting Story Tactics that Inspire Connection
19 March 2020, 11.00am-12.00pm

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Create a Corporate Volunteering Program that Works Workshop for Not-for-Profits - 23 Mar 2020, Sydney

The Centre for Volunteering
Create a Corporate Volunteering Program that Works Workshop for Not-for-Profits
23 March 2020, 9.15am-12.30pm
Level 3, 40 Gloucester St, The Rocks

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Screening Checks - 24 Mar 2020, Online


Justice Connect - Not-for-profit Law
Screening Checks
24 March 2020, 12.45pm-2.00pm

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Sector News & Resources


Are you Affected by DSS Data Exchange and/or Outcomes Reporting?

Community Data Solutions is a leading software provider for Not-for-Proft and Community Services agencies in Australia, and they have turn key software solutions available for both managing your organisation's confidential client data and at the same time assist you with Government statistical and outcomes reporting.

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Jetstar's Flying Start Program Grants #23

Jetstar's Flying Start Program invites community groups and organisations across Australia to apply for a grant to fund a project that will enrich the lives of people in their local community. Each grant will be worth $30,000, comprising $15,000 cash and $15,000 worth of Jetstar travel.

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Australian Not-for-Profit Technology Awards 2020

Connecting Up's Australian Not-for-Profit Technology Awards recognise the very best in technology innovation and excellence by organisations and individuals in the Australian not-for-profit sector. They take place during the Connecting Up Conference, taking place in Melbourne on 6-8 May 2020.

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Poverty in Australia 2020: Part 1, Overview

The ACOSS/UNSW Poverty and Inequality Partnership has released the first of its reports for 2020 - 'Poverty in Australia 2020: Part 1, Overview'. The report paints a picture of poverty in Australia showing that over three million people, including three quarters of a million children, are living in poverty.

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2020 Australian Community Report

This report by Australian Communities explores social licence, trust and the next generation of donors. With a rich history in Australia, the charities and not-for-profit sector is core to Australian communities. While this remains true today, societal shifts, demographic realities and generational donor transitions

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In Brief 


NCOSS has Introduced Discounted Packages for Job Advertisements: Learn more about discounted advertising on the NCOSS Jobs Board here.


NCOSS Community Cover: Have you reviewed your full NFP insurance program recently? Check out NCOSS Community Cover.


PhD Research in Energy Poverty among Older Australians on the Age Pension: UTS is calling for individuals dependent on the Age Pension struggling to pay energy bills to take part in a research initiative. Contact Caroline Portovalente here.


Collaboration for Transformation - Navigating the Ethics Minefield Webinar: Register for the Thursday, 5th March webinar discussing ethics and culture in a workplace. Read more about the webinar.


Strengthening Rural Communities Grant Program: Apply for grants by 24 March. Community services faced with increased demand following the bushfires can apply for grants through the Strengthening Rural Communities grant program provided by the Foundation for Rural and Regional Resilience (FRRR). Read the guidelines or call FRRR on 1800 170 020 for more information.


Early Bird Extended for ACWA's Community Leadership Program: Expressions of Interest are open for participation in ACWA/CCWT’s 2020 Community Leadership Program and you can now access the Early Bird discount rate until Friday 13 March! Find out how to unlock your leadership potential and transform your practice here.


CEO Reflective Practice Dialogue Sessions 2020 EOI: Expressions of Interest are being sought for three available places in ACWA 's Reflective Practice for Sector Leaders program aimed at providing a confidential and safe space for CEOs and Executive Managers to share challenges and seek collective solutions. Find out how you can participate here.




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