of Australia’s 665,000 Voluntary
Australia has 700,000 community organisations
and not-for-profits. About 35,000 of these employ one or more
staff, and many of these deliver community services for
governments. The other 665,000 community organisations do not
employ staff and rely on voluntary resources in serving their
communities and generating social capital and belonging.
In neighbourhoods and communities, self-help activity and
service to others, sporting activity and recreation, arts and culture,
conservation and heritage, education and health care, faith and
spirituality, these voluntary community groups constitute the
social fabric of Australia.
Australia's 665,000 voluntary community organisations are
unrepresented and without a voice in the public arena. When
governments consult with community organisations, they usually
talk to the 5% with paid staff and service
delivery contracts, and ignore the other 95%.
The lack of voice and representation of
Australia's 665,000 voluntary community groups has led to
invisibility in the public arena and a lack of recognition by
governments, policy makers and the media.
The Council of Voluntary Community Groups has been formed
to rectify this problem.Our
Statement of Purpose
We are inviting expressions of interest in joining
the Steering Group
to guide the development of the Council.
Expressions of Interest in joining the Steering Group may be
expressed through this
To register your interest, and/or that of your voluntary organisation,
This development process is hosted by the Centre
for Civil Society.
Statement of Purpose
associations and not-for-profits organisations are the principal
generators of social capital and community belonging in Australia. They
constitute Australia's social fabric. Ninety-five per cent of these
community organisations (about 665,000 in number) do not employ paid
staff: they rely on, and generate, extensive voluntary resources in
serving the well-being of their members and their communities.
2. Despite their pivotal role in
social life, voluntary community groups lack voice
and representation in the public arena. They lack recognition by governments,
policy makers and the media. They are typically overlooked in favour of
large charities and government service delivery organisations.
representative voice of voluntary community organisations will redress
this lack of voice and representation, and generate a visibility for
voluntary community groups in public life that matches their social
and community value.
A Council of Voluntary Community Groups will advocate for major regulatory reform
to create a
less burdensome operating environment for voluntary community
5. A Steering Group comprising representatives of diverse voluntary
community organisations will be established to guide the development of
a public voice in 2015.
the Council is open to all
voluntary community organisations and not-for-profits that meet the following eligibility criteria:
1. They are voluntary associations of members;
2. They rely on voluntary resources to conduct their core activities
with minimal paid support; and
3. They serve the well-being of their members
and/or their community and are not instruments for the delivery of government
The following table contains additional
information on this eligibility criteria:
|An eligible group
voluntary association of members
|The group may be incorporated or
unincorporated. It may be a branch or a parish or a district section of
a larger entity where the local group exercises significant autonomy in
its associational life.
voluntary resources to conduct its core activity
||The group may receive grants or
donations from governments or any other source, and may engage administrative
support and/or occasional contractors or suppliers of services, but will
rely on voluntary resources
rather than paid staff to conduct its core activity.
well-being of its members and/or their community and is not an
instrument for the delivery of government services
||The group may receive grants from
governments but may not enter into contracts with governments for the
delivery of government services.
There is a membership fee of $20 per
annum for voluntary community organisations to join the Council.*
* This fee is waived for
organisations which are members of Civil Society Australia.
Click here to register your interest, and/or that of your voluntary
0425 722 890