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Latest Our Community News

BUSHFIRE EMERGENCY: How you can help affected communities

Hundreds of charities, not-for-profits and community organisations are doing their bit to counter the effect of Australia's devastating and continuing bushfire emergencies. Here's what you can do.


COMMENT: Why it's time to rethink our MP numbers

If you count all parliamentarians, state and federal, the ratio of residents-to-member has gone up from 1:5,000 to 1:40,000 since 1901. Has life really got eight times simpler in the intervening 119 years? Are we that much less in need of a voice on our side in the bureaucratic brouhaha? Our Community's group managing director, Denis Moriarty, on why it's time to rethink our MP numbers.


TATTOOED ANGEL: How an app and a community saved a life

Being active in your local community is rewarding and feels good - but it can also save your life. Read the story of Suzi Young's experience with surviving cardiac arrest.


WHISTLEBLOWING: What NFPs should know about law changes

The Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Act 2019 took effect on July 1 this year, amending the Corporations Act 2001 so that a single, strengthened whistleblower regime covers the corporate, financial and credit sectors. What does this mean for your not-for-profit?


COMMENT: It's time for less spending and more giving

In the lead-up to Christmas, Our Community's group managing director Denis Moriarty calls for more giving and less spending this holiday season.


RESEARCH: Not-for-profit 'roadmap' tackles sector's big issues

A landmark study of Australian not-for-profit governance has created the clearest picture yet of an often-misunderstood sector, revealing that organisations are most worried about government relations, funding, demographic changes, workforces, and the difficulties faced by clients. Download the 82-page report


CONFERENCE: Speakers revealed for Communities in Control

The dates, the themes and many of the speakers are set for next year's Communities in Control conference, the one event that all community organisations and leaders should have in their diaries. Set aside May 18-19 in your calendar.


AGONY UNCLE: Unsporting bullies take control of croquet club

Our Community's Agony Uncle, Christ Borthwick, deals advice on dealing with bullies in the board room.


SOCIAL IMPACT: The one gift that keeps on giving

Think Impact's Alischa Ross asks us to pause for a minute in during our orgy of consumption to raise a fundamental question: What does it mean to really give?


AWARDS: Celebrating the sector's unsung heroes

A South Australian woman who advocates for the rights of single mothers, a Victorian organisation that supports people overcoming addiction, and a New South Wales organisation that aims to help reduce the number of Aboriginal people in prisons received top honours at the 2019 HESTA Community Sector Awards.


GIVING GROWING: Hundreds sign up for Giving Tuesday

HUNDREDS of charities and not-for-profits have joined a fast-growing movement that's emerging as a powerful antidote to end-of-year excess, with charity leaders such as Tim Costello praising the December 3 event.


COMMENT: The joy of giving - on a Tuesday

Our Community's group managing director, Denis Moriarty, touches on what Giving Tuesday means to him.


GOOD GOVERNANCE: Why you should trust and verify

The executive director of the Institute of Community Directors Australia, Patrick Moriarty, says one thing every organisation can do to improve the quality of its decisions is to employ the institute's mantra: "Trust and verify".


FESTIVAL: Community directors calendar to return in 2020

As the door closes on the 2019 Festival of Community Directors, the Institute of Community Directors Australia (ICDA) is excited to announce that the festival will return in 2020 - with a new training calendar focused on a new suite of topics.


SECTOR REFORM: Our Community's role in sector blueprint

Community Directors Council chair Susan Pascoe, the former chief of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission, has joined more than 30 other for-purpose leaders to set a new sector agenda.


FUNDRAISING: Why you've got to accept online donations

It's never been easier for community groups and not-for-profits to collect donations online. If you're not yet - why not? We examine what donors expect from NFPs in 2019.


GIVING TUESDAY: Small orgs boost with ready-made fundraiser

Australia's fundraising professionals say GivingTuesday, on December 3, is a great opportunity for big and small not-for-profits looking for an edge.


RESOURCES: Damn Good Advice for Schools now available

Download or order your copy of the book that answers 25 questions that school councillors need to ask themselves.


FUNDRAISING: Not too late to get aboard Giving Tuesday train

Community groups, charities and their supporters are being urged to get involved in the world's largest giving bonanza on December 3 as a powerful antidote to the pre-Christmas consumer frenzy, with everyone from tiny charities to big business getting involved.


COMMENT: Ignoring the data is an invitation to disaster

Our Community group managing director Denis Moriarty examines the crucial connection between data, decisions and government in his latest commentary, appearing across 150-odd Australian Community Media news titles.


SURVEY: Study proves NFP leaders need a better welcome

Nearly half of Australia's not-for-profits are giving their directors - including treasurers, secretaries and chairs - a poor induction into their organisation, a study into the sector's governance shows.


TREASURERS' AWARDS: Sports clubs shine

Australia's best community treasurers have shown how it is possible to do more with less when you combine good tech with clever ideas and great organisational skills.


NFP SPOTLIGHT: How do not-for-profit finances compare?

Australia's not-for-profits are almost evenly split between thriving organisations and battlers when it comes to their finances, a study into not-for-profit governance shows. Tap for more results, and to download the report.


COMMENT: What's the Catholic church teaching us about love?

Our Community's group managing director Denis Moriarty reveals the tough decision his partner Brendan made to quit as a deputy principal of a Catholic school, because as he puts it, "he can no longer live a lie".


FINDINGS: Study spotlights not-for-profit crime threat

Thousands of crimes targeting Australia's not-for-profits are going unreported, a detailed study into not-for-profit governance has revealed. The Institute of Community Directors Australia's latest Spotlight Report examines the impact of fraud and cybercrime on not-for-profit organisations.


B-CORPS: Recognition in mission to be a force for good

Our Community been included on the annual list of companies setting the gold standard for businesses doing good, making the list for "Best for Community" in 2019. It's the fourth year running.


B-CORPS II: Our Community House gets busy

Our Community House, the new headquarters for the social sector in Melbourne, is helping to spread the word about B Corps - businesses that balance purpose with profit.


ULURU STATEMENT: Time to show a bit of heart

The statement may take only a couple of minutes to read, but it's taken 231 years for colonialists to come to terms with it. It's our first chance since 1788 to come to a mutually respectful relationship with the cultures we spent so many decades attempting to erase.


#GIVINGTUESDAY: Why you should join this global movement

Australia is gearing up for its biggest ever GivingTuesday in 2019. What is it, and why should your organisation or community group get involved?


CONDUCT: What charities need to know about new rules

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) has released new guidance on the External Conduct Standards (ECS). Effective since late July, these standards impose additional governance, recordkeeping and oversight obligations on registered charities with activities outside Australia.


COMMENT: Old-school not-for-profits risk losing trust

Our Thinker-in-Residence covers the trend of decreasing levels of trust in not-for-proft boards and what can (or should) be done about that.


AWARDS: Winners shine a light on our funding future

A team of NSW Government grantmakers overseeing a heritage grants budget of around $3 million per annum has been crowned the 2019 Grantmaker of the Year.


SPOTLIGHT REPORT: How well is your organisation performing?

The new Spotlight Report "Assessing Board & CEO Performance" reveals nearly two in 10 organisations have never reviewed their CEO's performance, a third of not-for-profit boards don't have a system for reviewing their own performance, while half of board members say they'd benefit from governance training. Discover the latest revelations from our national study into not-for-profit governance.


DATA READY: How NFPs can become more data driven

Innovation Lab lead Sarah Barker, based at Our Community House, explains how good use of data can be powerful and help transform your organisation.


COMMENT: Why battling homelessness is worth a gamble

Homelessness is a national problem that's rapidly compounding. A recent study found that it is up by more than 20 per cent since 2001. Yet homelessness is also one of the very few problems Australia faces that has a simple solution. If we build more social housing, homelessness will go away. All we need is money.


GENDER TRENDS: $100m donations study reveals preferences

Our research reveals big differences in the way men and women give. An analysis of $100m in donations to online platform GiveNow since 2001 by the Innovation Lab shows women give more often, but men chip in larger amounts. Read the news report, summary, and our interactive analysis now


SPOTLIGHT STUDY: A View from the Chair

Nearly all chairs enjoy their role as a board member and are planning to stay in their position, but the majority say they would benefit from more governance training. Download the report now


HR HELP: Free human resources for the community sector

Not-for-profits struggling to manage the estimated one-million-strong workforce in the huge community sector have a new place to turn to for help: Good Jobs Great HR at www.goodjobs.com.au.


COMMENT: Community Advocates must do better

In the wake of the shock Federal Election result, community organisations will have their work cut out for them. Our Community's Denis Moriarty charts a way forward for not-for-profit advocacy.


KEYNOTE: Fr Rod Bower calls for greater belonging

Outspoken Anglican priest Father Rod Bower called on Communities in Control delegates to foster a greater sense of belonging for all people in his keynote speech "All justice is social"


KEYNOTE: Accentuate the positive: Professor Lea Waters

In a very moving, personal address to Communities in Control, Professor Lea Waters shared with delegates the story of the family circumstances that eventually led her to the field of positive psychology. She called on not-for-profit sector organisations to work towards overcoming their negativity bias and focus instead on strengths.


IMPACT: Why social impact measurement is an essential skill

Impact specialist Andrew Callaghan has analysed new Australian government strategies for "commissioning for outcomes" and says grantmakers should be ready to lead when it comes to understanding impact and achieving measurable results.


HIGHLIGHTS: Why our conference will keep shaking things up

Two days after the shock federal election result, the Communities in Control conference couldn't have come at a better time for organisations fearing for the future, with its clarion call to "Get Angry. Then Get Organised."
Read our wrap, see the vids and download our newsletter special edition now


EVENT WRAP: Practical Impact shows NFPs to evaluate better

The recent Practical Impact Conference, brought top talent around data, evaluation and impact measurement from Australia, New Zealand and the United States to Our Community House to highlight how the social sector can measure their results better.


NFP INTELLIGENCE: How our Data Lab will help you do better

Our Community House's Data and Communications Lab - an offshoot of the Innovation Lab - has flicked the switch to better understanding by not-for-profits through better intelligence, easy-access tutorials and analysing sector data.


SPOTLIGHT STUDY: Not-for-profits missing the data train

More than one in 10 not-for-profits doesn't bother tracking its success, while one in four say they don't collect any type of data, with arts, culture, sport and recreation groups the least likely to measure their success. Download the report now


STATEMENT: Our Community welcomes ALP's charities policy

One of Australia's leading suppliers of education, tech tools and connections for the not-for-profit sector has welcomed with open arms the Australian Labor Party policy statement regarding charities in Australia.


BOARD DIRECTION: Why it's time to Communicate with Clout

In the May 2019 edition of Community Directors Intelligence we help you wrangle the media, define your brand, measure your impact and understand where not-for-profits stand in the days before the federal election.


SECTOR TRENDS: How NFPs can keep calm under pressure

With more than 30 years of experience on NFP boards and as managing director of her own company providing strategy and fundraising advice, Wendy Brooks is well placed to take the pulse of the sector. She says funding and leadership will be key factors you'll face.


INTERACTIVE: Numbers prove LGBTIQ+ funding falls short

A new report on LGBTIQ+ funding in Australia by Our Community and LGBTIQ+ collective giving group The Channel shows where the money is really flowing. | Explore our interactive now


SECTOR STUDY: Winners sum up the mood in NFP survey

We've recently finished a survey of nearly 1900 not-for-profit groups to create a snapshot of key issues affecting boards across Australia and awarded some of the best comments. If you missed the survey, it's still worth downloading the questions to assess your performance.


TRAVEL PAYMENTS: Can I claim that on tax?

Do you understanding travel expenses and your legal obligations for your not-for-profit? Now you do ...


Top tips: How to nail your media coverage

The "mayor" of Hootville aka media guru Brett de Hoedt knows a thing or two about good communications and media, as an ex-journo across print, radio and TV, now heading a firm specialising in not-for-profits issues. Brett has released a stack of free resources for community organisations and here's a taste of his expertise with five tips to win coverage.


LEGAL TIPS: How NFPs can stay ahead of the threats

Siblings Catherine and Andrew Brooks are a formidable pair of legal experts who've forged a reputation for having a compassionate understanding of not-for-profits and their challenges. Here's their view of the trends and threats facing the sector.


NEW HQ: Our Community House opens in North Melbourne

A diverse array of for-purpose organisations are planning to join Victoria's first data-focused co-working hub for the social sector, Our Community House, now open.


CONFERENCE: Communities in Control set to shake things up

Imagine this. One thousand delegates fired up by campaigners, mavericks, advocates, radicals, intellectuals and artists at the same time as Australians go to the polls. Expect fireworks. Download the program


UPDATE: What's up with the Festival of Community Directors

The 2019 Festival of Community Directors kicked-off with a bang in February, beginning a year-long celebration of learning for the not-for-profit sector. Here's what's next.


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