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Introducing Stories of Organisational Change & Good Practice

As the community services sector continues to adapt to the ever-changing environment in which we operate, NCOSS has developed a suite of resources to support organisations in their consideration of organisational change. Using story-telling as the tool, we have engaged with thought leaders to present examples of innovative solutions that organisations have adopted in order to remain sustainable and efficient in changed environments.

  • Stories of Organisational Change present examples of organisations that embarked on a journey along the “MOU to Mergers” continuum in response to a changed funding environment.
  • Stories of Good Practice cite new practices that are emerging (e.g. around peer support and strengthening informal partnerships) in order to ‘do things better’ in changed environments.

This initiative has resulted in a mix of multi-media resources that includes impact video narratives, audio files, interview videos, interview transcripts and links to key resources.


Download the three-page summary of resources:

NCOSS Stories of Organisational Change and Good Practice At a Glance: List of Resources (pdf)


Introductory video from NCOSS CEO Joanna Quilty




Stories of Organisational Change

New Era’s merger with Civic Disability Services

In 2018-2019, the theme of mergers and amalgamations figured repeatedly in NCOSS’ conversations with disability services. This aligns with the previous finding (National Disability Services 2017 sector report) that “38% of organisations are currently discussing a merger, with 7% currently undertaking a merger” . Here’s one insightful story on what Civic Disability Services and the former New Era Independent Living Centre did right when they joined forces in 2017-2018.

'Impact Story' video (3m 35s)

Doing Mergers: What Works

These five interview videos (in 3 to 4 minute segments) are packed with the top things that you need to consider before and while going through a merger. NCOSS is pleased to have gained clear and useful insights from industry stalwarts who have ‘been there, done that’:

  • Graeme Gordon Innes AM, Australian Disability Discrimination Commissioner (2005 to 2014)
  • Annie Doyle, CEO of Civic Disability Services
  • Diana Ferner, Consulting Director at Social Ventures Australia
‘What Works’ interview (Q&A) videos:

“Law in plain English” case studies

Amy Williams, a highly-experienced lawyer-trainer from Justice Connect, developed the following webinar recordings for NCOSS. In keeping with “the law in plain English” style, Amy uses specific scenarios to present top tips for working with other organisations.

Working with Other Organisations: Case Studies & Learnings from Justice Connect (approx. 8-10 mins/webinar)

Consolidating: What Works

When the Blind Citizens NSW state chapter consolidated with its national counterpart in 2017-18, strategies around the “4Ps” (Purpose, People, Process, Particulars) paved the way for successful outcomes.

What Works: Blind Citizens Consolidation with Blind Citizens Australia (pdf)

Stories of Good Practice

What happens when two closely-collaborating organisations take the first steps to merge, and then decide NOT to proceed? Two disability services in South West Sydney, both well-regarded in the local community, present insights on how this decision led to new practices on working more closely together.Working Together: An interview with Disability MacArthur and Myrtle Cottage (pdf)
There’s much evidence of the huge benefits of peer support, and its potential for self-advocacy, among people with disability. In this interview, Sally Aurisch (NSW Coordinator of Blind Citizens Australia) shared the top strategies that contributed to the success of BCA’s 2018-2019 peer mentoring project.


Here’s a summary of five simple ways to make a peer mentoring initiative work, as gleaned from Blind Citizens Australia’s project.


Peer Mentoring: An Interview with Blind Citizens Australia (pdf)





What Works: Blind Citizens NSW/Australia Peer Mentoring Project (pdf)


NCOSS Research

NCOSS Report on Disability and Advocacy Organisations 2019

Between May and July 2019, NCOSS undertook a small research project that collected information from 34 disability advocacy and information organisations. The research focussed on the experiences of these organisations; the changes since the end of previous block funding for specialist disability services and the full roll out of the NDIS, and their plans for the future.

NCOSS Report on Disability and Advocacy Organisations 2019
NCOSS Formalising Partnerships: Resource Kit 2008

This kit was developed to support small to medium-sized non-government organisations that were interested to formalise partnerships, with a view to seeking new funding opportunities or revising the way in which recurrent funding is applied to service provision. Many users have found the examples and principles to be as relevant and as timely as ever.

NCOSS Formalising Partnerships: Resource Kit 2008



Useful Resources and Links

NSW Communities & Justice

Key resources