Latest Our Community News
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.
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.
PREDICTIONS: Brace for impact of elections, quotas, inquiries
Community Hubs chief Sonja Hood has these predictions for the big issues likely to face not-for-profits.
REGULATIONS: How whistleblowing law shake-up affects you
Blowing the whistle on trouble could be the best thing you ever do for your organisation. Find out why.
FUNDING EXPERIMENTS: Five grants trends to watch
From "micro-focus" grants to "f**k-up nights", here are our top predictions for grants trends we've begun to see emerging this year.
BUZZWORDS: Jargon you'll be hearing more of in 2019
Dr Lucy Bernholz presents a primer on the jargon you'll be hearing in the news, at conferences, and around meeting tables in 2019. Some are ephemeral, some are meaningful. Get your bingo cards ready.
ACNC PLANS: Gary Johns on what you can expect this year
ACNC Commissioner Gary Johns spells out his agenda and priorities for the sector including governance, the new ACNC IT system, resources, data and the benefits of having your own website.
CHILD SAFETY: Passion project aims to keep kids safe
A tech consultant who was sexually abused as a schoolboy says his latest invention is a "passion project" aimed at making sure other children don't suffer what he did. Learn about the project here.
POLICY: What to expect (at work) when you're expecting
Pregnant women have the right to nap at work when they need to, under a new pregnancy and parenting policy implemented at Our Community last month. We spoke to executive director Kathy Richardson about how the new policy was developed, and how it might be adopted by other workplaces.
ACNC: Commission seeks new measures for not-for-profit health
The ACNC is looking for new ways to measure success in the sector, but not everyone is happy.
TOP ISSUES: Legal eagle's birds-eye view of the sector
Lawyer Rebecca Lambert-Smith has a keen eye on the regulatory environment and takes a holistic look at how things could pan out for the not-for-profit sector in the near future.
INSPIRATION: Find focus with the Festival of Community Directors
Australia's first-ever year-long celebration of community governance, the 2019 Festival of Community Directors, is jam-packed with inspirational, informative and celebratory events. Download the program.
DONATIONS: Understanding the power of suggestion
Our Community researchers have proven how important it is for fundraisers to tailor their suggested donation amounts according to the profile of their particular supporters. Plus download the report
LEGAL: New accounting rules for not-for-profits
Not-for-profits will need to revise their approach to assessing income following the introduction of new accounting standards. The changes affect assets and volunteer services received by organisations for much less than "fair value". Find out more.
PAT'S TIPS: Seeing the big picture crucial to your survival
ICDA's executive director and head of training, Patrick Moriarty, has seen the best and worst of not-for-profit governance. Here are his thoughts on the challenges facing the sector this year. Plus: Watch his video now.
#GivingTuesday: Aussie, NZ giving campaign goes global
Australia's first giving platform GiveNow has been appointed as a regional leader for the global #GivingTuesday movement, just days before the fundraising service hits a $100-million milestone.
AGONY UNCLE: Paws for thought before blowing the whistle
Our Community's Agony Uncle, Christ Borthwick, deals advice on what to do when receiving gifts from charities.
BRONTOSAURUSES VS BUTTERFLIES: Finance royal commission
Our Community's Thinker-in-Residence dives into the recent Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry and explains how will affect the community sector.
FUTURE 500: High hopes for scholarship winners
The first of our Future 500 Governance Leadership Scholarship winners have been announced. All the applicants showed great commitment to their causes, all of them driven by a passion for a purpose beyond profit.
MEET THE TRAINER: How Lisa's ear for harmony is helping NFPs
We spoke with Our Community's latest addition to the training team, Lisa Jennings, about her involvement in the community sector, her passion for music, and what she loves about being in the classroom with community directors.
DIRECTORS: Good governance again in the spotlight in 2019
Former ACNC commissioner Susan Pascoe, now chair of the Community Directors Council, is well versed in the challenges and opportunities facing the community sector. She looks at what lies ahead for NFPs in 2019, and predicts a renewed focus on governance.
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