Sector building: QCOSS' Stacey De Calmer (centre left) and Caxton Legal Centre
We listened to, collaborated with and celebrated our members and Queensland’s social services organisations.
Build the capacity of organisations and the sector collectively to use data, including the experience and perspectives of service users, to design and improve services and measure outcomes.
Research and Evaluation Network:
This network provides an opportunity for collaboration and knowledge sharing on research and evaluation methods. The network meets regularly to hear from guest speakers about their own organisational data collection and service evaluation systems. In 2022-23, seven webinars were held with more than 380 people attending. The Microsoft Teams research and engagement group has grown to 76 active users in the reporting period.
Using consumer data for continuous improvement:
QCOSS partnered with Queensland Positive People, St Vincent de Paul Society Queensland and Communify Queensland to create the report Using consumer data for continuous improvement. The report identifies how organisations can use consumer data to improve their programs on an ongoing basis.
Data Collaborative Demonstration Project:
QCOSS’ Data Collaborative Demonstration Project, in partnership with QUT, highlights the benefits of data sharing for community service organisations with the aim of developing a community led and operated data sharing platform. In 2022-23, QUT completed the collective data analysis. QCOSS and QUT presented these initial findings and analysis of the project to participating organisations.
Data support for individual organisations:
QCOSS provided data support to 14 organisations across Queensland. The support helped organisations access and interpret local community data to inform service planning. For example, The Council to Homeless Persons (Queensland) used data to support the development of a Professional Framework and Guidelines for the Housing and Homelessness sector.
Networks and influence
QCOSS policy networks identify shared sector challenges, emerging issues, and advocacy priorities, and collaboratively generate solutions.
Research and Evaluation Network
Members collaborate and share knowledge on data collection and service evaluation systems. The network met seven times in 2022-23 and has 360+ members.
Community Services CEO Network
Members shape solutions to issues impacting the sector with a focus on structural reform. The network met four times during 2022-23 and has 99 members.
Quality Collaboration Network (QCN)
Members share experiences, information and resources on audit and quality matters. It provides valuable feedback to government on the HSQF review process. The network met 10 times during 2022-23 and has more than 500 members.
Women's Equality Network
Members respond to and provide advice on matters relating to women’s equality. The network met four times during 2022-23 and has 20 members.
Queensland Peaks Network
QCOSS convenes the Queensland Peaks Network, and members identify sector issues and share perspectives. The Queensland Peaks Network met four times during 2022-23 and has 29 member bodies.
Essential Services Consultative Group (ESCG)
Members influence energy policy processes and contribute to government policy on key consumer reforms. The network met five times during 2022-23 and has 22 members.
Ensure we know what is happening in the community services sector and community
State of the Sector report:
This annual report outlines issues impacting social service sector users and providers. Information is gathered from Town Halls, the Australian Community Sector Survey and through in-depth interviews.
In 2023, the report found that the key issues affecting service users were living affordability, housing, health, unsafe home environments, youth wellbeing, transport, natural disasters and the digital divide. Issues impacting service providers included intensity of demand, funding adequacy, natural disasters and workforce retention. Service providers pointed to collaboration and innovation as central to helping the sector overcome some of the identified challenges.
QCOSS held Town Halls in Toowoomba, Rockhampton, Cairns, Ipswich, Gympie, Brisbane, Mackay, Gold Coast and Townsville.
These were practical, in-person sessions exploring the emerging issues in local communities across Queensland. The Town Halls informed the development of our annual State of the Sector report, provided the basis of our Queensland budget submission, and delivered a vital stream of information for QCOSS to feed back to government. They were also an opportunity to engage regional media with stories related to the housing crisis. More than 400 people from across the sector attended.
Provide opportunities for the community services
sector to connect and build relationships.
The QCOSS Conference: Power and Politics of the Care Economy ran from 6 to 8 September 2022. The conference was attended by 385 delegates from across Queensland’s social service sector and featured two networking events, an art exhibition and 12 breakout sessions on the following topics:
Recent trends in not-for-profit governance
Leading for impact
Achieving economic security for women
Our power in action – community-led change
The future of social housing: innovative solutions from the ground up
Developing our future workforce
Raising the age: transforming youth justice
Data sharing and collaboration to advance outcomes across our sector
Climate justice: community resilience
Breaking entrenched systems of disadvantage and discrimination
Connecting the community sector with the arts to achieve social change.
Keynote speakers included Grace Tame, Professor Megan Davis, Hon. Leeanne Enoch MP, Hon. Di Farmer MP, journalist Amy Remeikis, Dr Amy MacMahon MP, Tim Nicholls MP and Queensland Human Rights Commissioner Scott McDougall. The event was emceed by Paralympian and social worker Karni Liddell. Keynote speeches centred on gender, the economics of care work, power, politics, the Uluru Statement from the Heart and discrimination in Queensland.
A post-event satisfaction survey showed that 95% of attendees were either very satisfied or satisfied.
Musician Waveney Yasso at the 2022 QCOSS Conference Welcome Reception.
QCOSS Board Chair Matt Gardiner addresses attendees.
Queensland Youth Orchestra members playing during the Welcome Reception.
Queensland Youth Orchestra members playing during the Welcome Reception.
Paralympian and Conference MC, Karni Liddell
QCOSS CEO Aimee McVeigh
QCOSS CEO Aimee McVeigh with Hon Di Farmer MP and Professor Bronwyn Fredericks.
Professor Megan Davis
Hon Di Farmer MP
Journalist Amy Remeikis
From left to right: Colleen Tribe, QCOSS CEO Aimee McVeigh, QCOSS Chair Matt Gardiner, Professor Bronwyn Fredericks, Kevin Mercer, Lee-Anne Simpson, Rachelle Patterson, Linda McClelland, and Faiza El-Higzi.
The inaugural Queensland Community Impact Awards (QCIA) celebrated the remarkable and often unacknowledged work of the social service sector. Fifty-five nominations were received across three award categories:
Community Impact: recognises the extraordinary contribution of an organisation or team in supporting or serving their community in Queensland.
Frontline Hero: recognises the extraordinary contribution of a frontline worker in supporting or serving their community in Queensland.
Human Rights: recognises the contribution of an organisation or individual in advancing a human rights respecting culture in Queensland.
The recipients were:
Multicultural Social Network (Community Impact Award)
Leanne Papas from Micah Projects (Frontline Hero Award)
Caxton Legal Centre (Human Rights Impact Award)
The winners were announced at a gala dinner featuring Pride Choir and The Voice grand finalist, Kristal West. The dinner was held on the second night of the QCOSS conference and attended by 250 guests. It was emceed by award winning author, Trent Dalton.