NCOSS Sector e-News 22 July 2021

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Headshot Joanna Quilty resized with margins Dear Colleagues,


Firstly, I would like to acknowledge the incredible work of frontline services across Greater Sydney and NSW who are supporting the most vulnerable during this incredibly difficult time. You are keeping clients supported and safe while also ensuring the same for your staff – thank you for all the work you are doing to support those in need.


Following advocacy efforts from NCOSS and peak colleagues, the NSW Government has clarified that those engaged by DCJ to provide housing and homelessness services, services to people with disability or vulnerable people, and those involved in family violence and sexual assault services, are authorised workers. But if your work can be done from home, it should be. Further information is available here.


Across Greater Sydney, and particularly for those living in the Fairfield, Canterbury-Bankstown and Liverpool LGAs, lots of people are struggling at the moment. And for those who have lost work hours or are dependent on income support payments – it’s especially tough.


Many on JobSeeker, Parenting Payment or Youth Allowance are also reliant on paid work to make ends meet. Yet these people are not eligible for the Federal Government’s disaster payments which defies logic. It highlights the disparities in the system that further punish the most vulnerable. Together with ACOSS and the COSS network we are arguing for fairer, more inclusive measures to get people through this difficult time. Read the latest media release.


At a state level we are fighting hard to ensure that the needs of vulnerable groups are front and centre, and that the sector is supported in its critical role. We’ve put to our political leaders and senior bureaucrats the need for strengthened protections for people in precarious positions, such as those in the private rental market, at risk of homelessness, and non-residents; prioritising vaccination for the most vulnerable population groups; and the importance of engaging with the sector and trusted community leaders to convey public health messages that address the concerns of diverse communities.


We’ve also highlighted the challenges for crowded households with insufficient technology and kids at risk of disengaging from education; blockages and barriers in the distribution of food relief to those in need; and that community organisations - from multicultural services, to neighbourhood centres, to homelessness and DV services and beyond - are bracing for a surge in demand once lockdown ends. Our approach is to engage with and listen to our members on the ground, act as a conduit to government, and put forward practical ‘bottom up’ solutions.


In this regard we are working with Treasury to understand how the support package announced by the NSW Government last week works when it comes to non-profit organisations and what underlying rules apply. We will keep you posted as answers come to hand, as we know this will make a real difference to those of you whose revenues have suffered.


Our recently released research ‘Issues, barriers and perceptions about the COVID-19 vaccine among culturally and linguistically diverse communities in NSW’ is also timely. Undertaken on behalf of NCOSS by Social Equity Works before this latest outbreak, it highlights that NSW’s CALD communities are far from homogenous. Nevertheless, across the survey of 199 community members and 11 focus groups undertaken, common themes to emerge included: messaging on the vaccine is confusing; misconceptions abound; Facebook is preferred over government websites as the ‘go-to’ source of information; and these variables are contributing to a cautious, ‘wait and see’ approach. You can read coverage of the research here.


The research tells us that clear, authentic messaging from trusted sources is most effective. In this regard, a number of community organisations in South West Sydney have started developing their own videos (recorded on an iPhone), in community languages to convey ‘stay home’ and ‘get vaccinated’ messages to their clients, networks and local communities. If you are interested in doing the same, please get in touch with Elyse Cain at and we can provide you with a script, examples of what others doing and answer any queries that you have. You might also be interested in sharing this great VCOSS resource - which also comes in 10 languages – with your communities and networks.


Stay safe everyone. 


- Joanna Quilty, NCOSS CEO




FREE Online Discussion Series: NCOSS/DCJ 'Evidence Talks' Training

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The NSW Department of Communities and Justice defines evidence-informed practice as "using evidence to design, implement and improve our programs and interventions". This evidence can be from research studies, lived experience and client voice, and professional expertise.


In this FREE online discussion series, we will 'go back to basics' and relearn concepts (from spotting quality evidence to revisiting Theory of Change), whilst preparing to use the highly-anticipated DCJ Evidence Portal when it launches in September/October. Register now: NCOSS/DCJ 'Evidence Talks' Training.


4th Financial Inclusion Conference – Roads to Resilience

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The 4th Financial Inclusion Conference – Roads to Resilience will take place on 26+27 October 2021 in Sydney and live online.


The two day conference will bring together international experts and delegates from all over Australia, taking a deep dive into financial resilience. Featuring four breakout streams, expo, conference dinner and presentation of the annual Financial Inclusion Awards.


Read more and register here: The 4th Financial Inclusion Conference – Roads to Resilience.


AbSec Learning and Development Centre: Trauma Course

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AbSec Learning and Development Centre has released a new interactive short course on trauma informed care.


The two-day online course will equip workers with the knowledge, understanding and approaches to work effectively with survivors of past and ongoing trauma, as well as understanding and responding to Aboriginal intergenerational trauma.


Find out more. Course Dates: 16-17 August 2021, 20-21 September 2021.


What are your top 5 priorities?
Take 5 minutes to help set Asthma Australia’s agenda

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Help us understand how we can help children with asthma live their best life. We want to hear from the community sector, so please share your views with us.

  • Children 0-14 years represent half of all avoidable asthma hospitalisations in Australia
  • Children aged 5-9 years have double the asthma burden of disease than those aged 10-14 years
  • We aren’t seeing enough change in outcomes and quality of life for children with asthma and we need to do things differently

Survey Link: Helping to improve the quality of life for children with asthma.


NCOSS Training & Events for the Sector




NCOSS/DCJ 'Evidence Talks' online discussion series



AbSec Learning and Development Centre Trauma Course



4th Financial Inclusion Conference – Roads to Resilience
View all Training & Events 

Latest Community Jobs


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Advertise your Jobs on the NCOSS Community Jobs Board

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In Brief


NCOSS Community Sector Banking Needs Survey – NCOSS is keen to understand the banking and financing needs of different parts of the community sector in NSW, experiences and challenges to date and whether there are gaps that could be filled by more responsive service, new products and better understanding of the NGO operating environment. Click on the link to find out more & respond to the short survey: NCOSS Community Sector Banking Needs Survey - Survey closes 5 August 2021.


Women NSW and Dress for Success are delighted to offer a demonstration of the Women’s Financial Toolkit, a free resource designed to help women by bringing together reliable and trusted information on money and finance matters, in one place. Date: Thursday, 5 August 2021 Time: 10.00am – 11.30am. The Webinar will be hosted by Dress for Success on Zoom. Please click here to register your place.


Justice Connect - New webinars available: Starting a Social Enterprise - Tuesday 3 August, 12.45-2pm & Understanding Your Not-for-profit's Constitution - FREE webinar, Tuesday 24 August, 12.45-2pm.


Black Dog Institute Community Webinars: Free community webinars during July-September 2021 include Navigating your Teen's Mental Health; Mental Fitness for Young People; Breaking Down Depression; and INSIGHT, a mental health webinar for young people on the topics of anxiety and depression. More information and registration.


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



Sector Professional Development


Making the Most of your Training Investment - 3 Aug & 7 Sep 2021, Online


Centre for Community Welfare Training (CCWT)
Making the Most of your Training Investment
3 & 7 September 2021, 9.30am-11.00am

Read More

Digital Nation Conference: Building a Connected, Capable, Confident Country - 4 Aug 2021, Online

Good Things Foundation Australia
Digital Nation Conference
Building a Connected, Capable, Confident Country
4 August 2021, 9.30am-4.00pm

Read More

Charity Law Association of Australia & New Zealand (CLAANZ) Conference - 5 Aug 2021, Melbourne & Online


Charity Law Association of Australia & New Zealand (CLAANZ) Conference 
"Government and the Sector"
5 August 2021, 9.00am-5.00pm
Melbourne & Online

Read More

Inspired! - 9 Aug 2021, Online


Verge Collaborative
9 August 2021, 1.15pm-4.30pm

Read More

Sector News & Resources


NSW Government 2021 COVID-19 Business Grant

If you're a business, sole trader or not-for-profit organisation in NSW and you've been impacted by the recent COVID-19 restrictions, you may be eligible for a one-off grant of $7,500, $10,500 or $15,000. The 2021 COVID-19 business grant provides support for businesses that experienced reduced demand or had to close due to the public health orders.

Read More

Impact100 2021 Sydney Grant

This year's Impact100 Sydney grant will support an eligible not-for-profit to develop and implement practical solutions aimed at supporting children and young people at risk in the Greater Sydney region. The $100,000 single grant will be awarded to an initiative that clearly demonstrates the funding will make a transformational impact.

Read More

Call Out: Volunteer Involving Organisations Providing Essential Community Services

The Centre for Volunteering's Emergency Volunteering Platform, which was set up to assist during the COVID-19 pandemic, is experiencing a rise in volunteer registrations during the current Stay At Home Orders in Sydney and surrounding areas. If your organisation provides essential services to the community register your organisation on the Platform.

Read More

Justice Connect Not-for-profit Law DGR Tool

The DGR Tool will help you work out the meaning and benefits of deductible gift recipient (DGR) endorsement; whether your organisation meets the eligibility requirements for DGR endorsement; and DGR categories that may be relevant to your organisation. 

It will take approximately 20 minutes to complete.

Read More

Guide to Success for Not-for-profit Boards & Committees

This whitepaper has been developed by Madgwicks Lawyers to assist not-for-profit boards and committees maximise potential and ensure the smooth running of the organisation. The guide addresses what your legal obligations are; how to handle potential conflicts of interest; not-for-profits and suing for defamation; and tips for not-for-profit organisations.

Read More

DVNSW & PWDA Disability Toolkit


Domestic Violence NSW (DVNSW) has released a new, online Good Practice Resource Manual. This provides practice-based resources and tools to support the domestic and family violence (DFV) sector – both frontline workers and service managers – in good practice service delivery.

Read More
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Member Spotlight 


NCOSS gives its Members the opportunity to share their stories, research, resources, events and more through NCOSS eNews. If you have something to share with the sector, send through a short blurb (50-70 words), image (200 x 200px) and relevant links to We will endeavor to add to an edition of eNews (goes out every fortnight on Thursday). Deadline for content is 12pm Monday, week of publication (next deadline is 12pm Monday, 2 August 2021).




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