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Conference Theme

Skip Navigation LinksWACOSS Conference 2016 Call for Abstracts Conference Theme

The theme for the WACOSS Conference 2016 is “WAy Ahead – Leave no one behind”. This theme was inspired by the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals; particularly the following pledge “As we embark on this collective journey, we pledge that nobody will be left behind. We wish to see the goals and targets met for all economic and social groupings”.

Networking Day

The Sector Networking Day is held the day before the official launch of the WACOSS Conference. The focus of the Networking Day is to bring diverse sectors together for informal opportunities to engage in discussions on key issues impacting services at the front line. This will be achieved through facilitated discussions that give voice to all sectors that make up the diversity of our community services.

In keeping with the Global theme, we are seeking an expert facilitator to work with the attendees on some futures planning. It is thought that this will assist community service organisations:
•    Take stock and discuss the emerging issues that will shape the future operating environment;
•    Start discussing the required actions that will help organisations respond to their future context and shape their futures;
•    Promote relationships, respect and opportunities when the sector collaborate; and
•    Develop solutions to potential future issues.

This may include several future hypotheticals looking at different potential political and economic scenarios that may impact the not-for-profit sector and the things to consider within these different scenarios.

Conference Streams

Four streams have been chosen for the WACOSS Conference 2016. Each stream will include examples of best practice. These streams can be seen below.

A society is thriving when it celebrates the involvement of all its citizens, actively engages individuals, families and communities in the design of services and communities.

What is the future of our civil society, and what does it mean for the roles of the non-government, private and public sectors? How can we engage as advocates in caring roles to strengthen democratic processes and overcome the current political barriers to achieving sustainable longer term outcomes? How can we address the opportunities to enhance self-determination in the critical areas of service-user engagement; co-design, co-evaluation and co-production; collaboration across services, agencies and disciplines.

Building an effective, accessible and sustainable sector

There is an increasing demand for services and cost pressures with reducing funding and resources. How do we build on existing strengths while learning from successful practice elsewhere? Can we deal with wicked problems through partnerships and collaboration?

What are the key global, national and local drivers shaping the work we do? Can we predict the issues of the future? Are there things that can be done now to improve the needs and outcomes in the future?


We are encouraging Aboriginal organisations to participate in the conference and providing opportunities to all conference delegates to enhance their knowledge, skills and approaches to working more effectively with our First Australians to deliver better community outcomes. 

For more information on the context and suggested topics please click here.
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