26 February 2020

Nominate outstanding contributions in the sector for a Community Service Excellence Award

Nominations are now open for the Community Services Excellence Awards!

The awards are a partnership between WACOSS and the Department of Communities, with major support from Lotterywest, and sponsors Hesta, Hope Community Services, Beyond Bank, and Parkerville Children and Youth Care.

The awards are an opportunity to recognise and celebrate outstanding contributions made by organisations and individuals in the community services sector, and the significant differences they make to our communities.

The awards coincide with the biennial WACOSS Conference, Finding Ground: Building a better way together, the largest gathering of the community services sector in Western Australia.

There are six categories for recognising organisations, and two award categories that recognise individuals and their exceptional work in the community services sector.

Don't miss your chance to nominate a person or organisation doing excellent work in the sector - visit

Pictured above are award recipients from the 2018 Community Service Excellence Awards.

Nominate a star of the sector
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Sector Survey: Non-Government contributions to homelessness services in Western Australia

Shelter WA is building on the work of the WA Alliance to End Homelessness to better understand the level of the sector's funding contribution to homelessness services in Western Australia. They are inviting organisations that provide homelessness services which may be completely unfunded, or only partly funded by Government to complete the survey. This data will assist Shelter WA to gauge the level of funding in the homelessness service system and will inform our advocacy efforts.
The survey will take 5-15 minutes depending on how many services you have and is open until 13 March 2020. All the information provided is completely confidential. For further information or any queries, please contact Jack Thornton via (08) 9325 6660 or
Take the survey

Speaking Out Survey - Summary Report

Mental health, perceptions of safety, and feeling connected are some of the key areas of concern in the Commissioner for Children and Young People’s inaugural Speaking Out Survey.
The survey included 4,912 Year 4ꟷ12 students from 125 schools across WA, who anonymously answered a range of questions about their day-to-day lives and how they rate their wellbeing.
Commissioner Colin Pettit said that the survey was the first of its kind to be undertaken in WA and had provided valuable insights into how children and young people are faring.

WA Volunteer of the Year Award nominations now open!

Volunteering WA has announced nominations open for the prestigious WA Volunteer of the Year Awards. Members of the community can nominate a special individual or organisation to be recognised for the contribution they have made. Taking place during National Volunteer Week, the Awards is designed to recognise the significant and highly valued contribution that volunteering makes in our communities. Last year's winners not only gained recognition of their outstanding volunteering efforts but also for the organisations in which they volunteer. Nominations are simple and quick, and are via an online form. Nominations are open until 5pm, Sunday 15 March 2020. Award recipients will be announced at a formal Gala Awards Dinner Presentation at Crown Perth on Thursday 21 May 2020.

Whistleblower Protection Policy updates for NFPs and charities

Changes to the Whistleblower Protection Policy mean that large charities with more than $1million per year turnover must have a whistleblower policy in place. Smaller organisations don't have the same requirements, but must comply with the Act when whistleblowing occurs. The ASIC website has helpful guidance that outlines the details of the requirement to have a Whistleblower Protection Policy. The guidance includes information on:
  • how whistleblower protections apply to companies
  • responsibilities that companies have under the whistleblower protections
  • whistleblower rights
  • managing whistleblower reports

Kununurra Community Kitchen looking for donations 

The Kununurra Community Kitchen has delivered a healthy, free community feed, every single Sunday since December 2016, and incorporate bush tucker, including meats, into their meals. As a volunteer-run organisation that works hard to coordinate across local business and NFPs in Kununurra, they need more financial support. To donate, visit their Go Fund Me page here. Stay up to date via their Facebook page for more pictures and posts, as they continue to build community partnerships and nurture relationships at a grass roots level. 

Calling all waste champions – Infinity Awards 2020

Nominations are now open for the 2020 Infinity Awards and will close at 5pm, Tuesday 10 March 2020. The awards celebrate Western Australia’s waste champions and recognise innovative solutions to reduce waste and improve reuse and recycling. There are 10 categories which are open to individuals, business and industry, government, schools, community organisations, not-for-profits and media outlets. Full details, including criteria and entry forms, can be found on the Waste Authority website.

Exploring 'Grooming' Interactions in Counselling and Case Work

While the term ‘grooming’ is most often used in regard to child sexual abuse and domestic violence offenders, a broader definition of the term in client work might be “Habitual and/or intentional actions by clients to elicit support, sympathy, favour or collusion in their version of reality” and is useful when working with many clients. Join the Australian Association of Social Workers' professional development event on Wednesday 1 April.
Register here

Pat Thomas House embarks on a new chapter

On 17 February 2020, Pat Thomas House changed their business name to OVIS Community Services (OVIS). For more than three decades they have empowered women and children impacted by family and domestic violence to strive for a better life that is free from violence and abuse, and the new name embodies the purpose and values provided to our clients and the community - to Overcome Violence and Inspire Safety.
The four service areas - Crisis, Early Intervention, Support and Education - will continue to evolve to deliver innovative and relevant person-centred programs aligned with their purpose and underpinned by values of respect, empathy, integrity, empowerment and excellence. The current refuge facility will carry the Pat Thomas name, in acknowledgement of Pat’s role as one of the pioneers of the organisation's past.
Visit the OVIS website

Hesta Report - Why Equity is Vital

The Hesta Report, Vital Signs outlines the challenges in achieving gender and pay equity faced by a predominantly female member base. It provides a snapshot of work, income, education and employment for women in Australia. Vital Signs brings together corporate social responsibility, advocacy, and responsible investment and aligns them with our chosen seven strategic UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It covers our continuing efforts to make a positive impact through advocacy, investment and conduct as an organisation.
Click here to publish your news with WACOSS!

Make Smoking History: You Quit, You Win

From Sunday 1 March to Saturday 9 May, Make Smoking History will air the 'You Quit, You Win' campaign across WA. The campaign highlights all the negative social and physical effects of smoking including having bad breath, feeling isolated, having to hide from your children, the expense associated with smoking, standing in the cold, feeling judged and running out of breathe.
Quit Smoking Tips

State Priority Occupations List (SPOL) survey

The Community Services, Health and Education Training Council (CSHETC) provides industry advice to the Department of Training and Workforce Development (DTWD) and the State Training Board (STB) relative to current and future training and employment requirements. The CSHETC would appreciate your feedback by completing a short questionnaire. The information will assist the CSHETC in providing the State Government with industry feedback regarding workforce development matters. This advice is provided by way of an Industry Snapshot and listing occupations from within your sectors that you deem to be a priority on the State Priority Occupations List (SPOL).
The SPOL is used to guide funding for training in Western Australia and migration purposes where jobs cannot be easily filled or where there is a long-term need for a supply of skilled labour. To ensure that your industry is included in this process and to assist the CSHETC in providing industry feedback to the DTWD and STB, your response to this survey is greatly appreciated. Information about the SPOL can be found on the Department of Training and Workforce Development website.

WA Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector Conference

The annual Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector Conference hosted by Aboriginal Health Council of Western Australia will this year focus on the theme - Healthy Country, Healthy Communities. The Conference will highlight how a healthy country has such a major impact on the health and wellbeing of communities all over the world, but especially Aboriginal communities in the metropolitan area, regional, remote, and very remote Western Australia. Register for the event on 25-26 March 2020.
Register now

New paper on strategies for developing collaborative practice

Child Family Community Australia have recently released a paper, co-produced with Emerging Minds, on strategies for developing collaborative practice in the child and welfare sector. In addition, they are running a free webinar next month on Collaborative Practice in child and family welfare: Building practitioners' competence, which will include a case example of what collaboration can look like in practice.
Download the resource

Child Safety Champions - Perth

Child Safety Champions is an intensive 2-day training program on 10-11 March is designed to give you the skills and knowledge to lead a child safeguarding portfolio or reform in your organisation. This training program is recommended for experienced professionals who have a responsibility to lead the implementation of a child safe environment for children and young people. This can include HR professionals, leaders and managers who have prior training or knowledge of child protection. Participants of this program are provided with a 12-month individual Child Wise Community of Practice membership. This membership provides access to a broad range of resources to support you at work and beyond, and it also includes access to scheduled webinars and events.
Read more and register

Anglicare WA Training Calendar

Anglicare WA Social Businesses is excited to present a number of training workshops at their training rooms at 23 Adelaide Terrace, Perth. From Accidental Counsellor to De-escalation techniques, Anglicare WA can offer courses built from many years of experience working in the sector. Booking is a simple click on the website. For bookings of more than 10 staff, workshops can be run in the workplace, and are more cost effective. For any queries contact Lauren Wooldridge via 08 9263 2065.
Read more

Members sought for a DFV Lived Experience Group

The Women’s Council for Domestic and Family Violence Services is the peak non-government body in Western Australia committed to improving the lives of women and children in society, and ensuring they live free from domestic and family violence. WCDFVS is seeking members to join a Lived Experience reference group who are:
  • At least two years out of an abusive relationship and believe they are safe to speak publicly.
  • Willing to be involved at a level that they feel is appropriate to them and their circumstances at the time.
  • Know they can choose not to be involved and to change their mind if things change for them; expect respect for their contribution.
  • From diverse backgrounds, age groups and who have unique and individual journeys to share.
  • Have the capacity to volunteer their time.
The WCDFVS often receives requests from government departments, media and researchers seeking the input of women with Lived Experience. WCDFVS will operate as the first point of contact for these requests and facilitate and support members of the Lived Experience Group who have the relevant experience and capacity to engage with the request. 
For more information contact Kedy Kristal via 0401 934 479 or

Volunteering WA National Volunteer Grants now open

Volunteering WA, with thanks to ongoing support from Lotterywest, is pleased to offer volunteer-involving organisations around WA the opportunity to apply for a grant of up to $1,000 to organise an event which recognises and thanks volunteers during National Volunteer Week, 18 - 24 May 2020. Grant applications are open until Sunday 8 March 2020.

Child Wise WA Public Training Calendar now available

Do you work or volunteer with children or young people? The Child Wise Child Safety Public Training Calendar for WA is now available to download. Choose from evidence-based training with real-life examples, delivered by highly qualified and experienced trainers. Save your spot early in any of the scheduled public training sessions, or contact via or 1300 244 539 if you are interested in in-house training for your organisation.
Download Training Calendar

Funding and Development Officer

St Patrick's Community Support Centre - applications close ASAP

27 FEB| Hopeful Voyager: Navigating your way through the ambiguous losses of mental ill health

AASW - West Perth - $155 - $240

6 MAR| International Women's Day Sparkling High Tea 2020

Women's Council for Family and Domestic Violence Services - Perth - $91

10-11 MAR| Child Safety Champions - Perth

Child Wise - Crawley - $858

11 MAR| National Principles for Child Safe Organisations WA

Commissioner for Children and Young People - Subiaco - $ Free

11 MAR| Mental Health Screening and Assessment Tools for Everyday Practice

AASW - West Perth - $190-$250

18-20 MAR| National Volunteering Conference

Volunteering Australia - Perth - $1,064

25-26 MAR| WA Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector Conference

Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services - Fremantle - $ varies

1 APR | Exploring ‘Grooming’ Interactions in Counselling and Case Work

AASW - West Perth - $190-$250

5-7 MAY | WACOSS Conference - Finding Ground: Building a better way together

Western Australian Council of Social Service - Fremantle - $ varies
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