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Housing Matters: capacity building and housing & homelessness sector news.
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Edition 11 - September 2015
From the CEO

Welcome to Housing Matters for September

 
Q Shelter has appointed Leone Crayden to its leadership position of Executive Director. Leone comes to Q Shelter with senior experience in the housing, community services and health sectors, as well as private sector experience. 

Leone will be spending some time at Q Shelter each week until mid-October 2015, when she will be taking up her position here full time.   Until then, Kent Maddock will continue as interim director.

We are pleased with the response to our new membership arrangements with many providers already signed up.  A summary of the benefits of membership appear later in the newsletter.  Join up quickly before our AGM on 22 October so that you can participate.  We are privileged to have the Minister for Housing and Public Works, the Hon Leeanne Enoch MP, as our guest speaker at the AGM.  
 
Immediately following our AGM, Q Shelter in association with PowerHousing Australia is co-hosting a seminar and networking event.  Eminent economist and commentator on housing affordability in Australia, Saul Eslake, will be speaking – a ‘must attend’ forum.  This will also be an opportunity for networking with colleagues from Queensland and other states.  Register for this event.  
 
Following on this theme of housing affordability, Q Shelter is working with CHPs for Qld and the Local Government Association of Queensland to host an event on 17 November at which you will be able to meet and have discussions with a range of representatives from the West Belconnen project on the ACT/NSW border – a planned new development that will deliver up to 11,500 homes in a socially-inclusive community that focuses on innovation, sustainability and affordability.  Check out the project at http://talkwestbelconnen.com.au/ and keep an eye on our website and in our October Housing Matters for details of the event.
 
We have had a lot of positive feedback on our recently published Calendar of Events which we have produced in conjunction with Under One Roof.  This will be updated quarterly and is a great way to keep informed of training and development opportunities relevant to our sector.
 
Our new website is live and we are pleased that we now can offer contemporary access to Q Shelter’s facilities through this.  Please check it out at www.qshelter.asn.au
 
So the newsletter is once again packed full of exciting features on NRSCH as well as news and information about housing and homelessness.  And of course remember to call us on 07 38315900 if you think we may be able to assist you with information or services.

   This edition includes...


Regional networks
New membership benefits
AGM: Nominations close tomorrow
New housing strategy
IEDP

 
Supporting regional networks 
As part of our renewed commitment to supporting Q Shelter branches and other regional housing networks,  Paul MacKay, Project Officer here at Q Shelter, has started to engage with networks around the state.
 
A number of networks will be undertaking strategic planning over the next month. Paul will be facilitating both the Cairns Housing and Homelessness Network and the Toowoomba Housing and Homelessness Coalition strategic planning sessions with their members. 
 
The Toowoomba Coalition has completed a major project: in conjunction with the Toowoomba City Council, building a toilet/shower block in Pechey St that is accessible to people who are homeless.  The completed project demonstrates the power of working together!
 
The networks on the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and North Moreton continue to remain strong, meeting regularly; including guest speakers and the generation and cross fertilisation of ideas.
 
Rockhampton has re-established its commitment to working together by calling for a Housing and Homelessness forum to be held in October, and a new network for the Wide Bay region will be launched in November.  Q Shelter will be there to help where we can at the forum and the initial stages of the network meetings.
 
In Mackay, Paul will be attending the network meeting on 8 October to check in with the members and to facilitate a snapshot of regional training needs with the group.
 
Q Shelter will hold a branch delegates meeting on 22 October 2015, where the future arrangements for supporting branches and networks will be discussed, as well priorities for Q Shelter’s 2016 program of support and training.
 
Future Housing Matters newsletters will include news and information about events from regional networks.  Please let us know if there is anything you would like to promote! Contact Paul.MacKay@qshelter.asn.au
New benefits for Q Shelter members
Q Shelter's new membership structure starts on 1 October with improved benefits for members.

A new provider category replaces the current small and large organisational categories and offers benefits valued at more than $275 a year, including:
  • 30 per cent conference discount (valued at $180 per person) with no limit on member numbers attending the conference
  • 30 per cent discount on member networking events (valued at $15 per person, per event)
  • one free webinar per year (valued at up to $80 a year)
  • priority tickets for special member events
  • 10 per cent discount on Q Shelter-delivered full fee for service products including:
    • bespoke consulting  such as tender preparation, strategic and business planning
    • program evaluation and review.
  •  Access to the discounted rates from the Q Shelter consultants’ panel.
For more information visit the Q Shelter website  or phone us on 3831 5900. 

AGM: Management committee nominations close 17 September
This year’s Q Shelter Annual General Meeting will be held on October 22 in Brisbane and will feature Minister for Housing and Public Works, the Hon Leeanne Enoch as the guest speaker.

The 2016 Management Committee will be elected at the AGM and Q Shelter invites all members to consider nominating for vacancies or proposed changes to the Constitution. Vacancies include: Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary, and five General Members.

Nominations must be received no later than 17 September, 2015. Candidates must be an individual financial member, be nominated by two financial members and accept the nomination.

Proxy forms are due by COB 21 October.

AGM details

Where: Wesley House, 140 Ann Street, Brisbane

When: 3.00pm Thursday 22 October, 2015

Bookings are essential.

Following the AGM, Q Shelter, in association with PowerHousing Australia, will co-host a seminar with Saul Eslake.  Saul is speaking on a topic relating to Australian housing policy. This is also a great opportunity to network with colleagues from Queensland and other states.  Register for this event. For more information about these processes please contact Q Shelter on 07 3831 5900 or see our Constitution.

A new Housing Strategy for Queensland
As part of the work to develop a new Queensland Housing Strategy, the Department of Housing is setting up a Housing Strategy External Reference Group made up of peak bodies (12 peak bodies have been invited). One of the main purposes of the group will be to assist the Department with developing and delivering a consultation plan for the new strategy. Q Shelter has been invited to participate in this group, which meets for the first time on Thursday 17 September.  For more information about this, please contact Jane.West@qshelter.asn.au.
 
Here is what the Department says about the new strategy:
 
“The Queensland Government is formulating a new strategic direction for better housing outcomes for the people and communities of Queensland.   This will inform the development of a new Queensland Housing Strategy.
 
The new Strategy will align with other key bodies work being undertaken across government and the community including the Advisory Taskforce on the Residential Transition for Ageing Queenslanders, an analysis of the recommendations of the Senate Economic References Committee Inquiry into housing affordability, the implementation of the findings from the Domestic and Family Violence Taskforce and the ongoing implementation of the National Regulatory System for Community Housing.
 
As part of the development of the Strategy, there will be meaningful engagement opportunities for local communities, tenants, stakeholders and representative groups to participate in shaping the Strategy. 
 
It is anticipated that the new Strategy will be ready for release in 2016.”

Department of Housing and Public Works’  Industry Development and Engagement Project
The following is information supplied by the Department of Housing (Market Development and Programs): 

Background

The Department of Housing and Public Works is working with the housing assistance industry to build a stronger and more sustainable social housing system in Queensland. Industry development is a way for the Queensland Government to support the housing assistance industry (which incorporates the housing and homelessness sectors) build the necessary skills and capabilities to respond to the increase in demand for human services. 
 
The department is implementing the Industry Development and Engagement Project (IDEP) to support the expansion of the industry’s capacity as a whole. The project will help achieve this by developing an Industry Development Framework and action plan that will empower and assist the industry to become better prepared and more sustainable to respond to the increasing need for services.  The ultimate goal of this project is for the industry to take ownership of the ongoing development of the housing industry as a whole. This project will provide the appropriate mechanisms and support for industry to achieve this.
 
The project has also established an Industry Development Reference Group, representing regional and Brisbane-based providers, to offer a further forum and voice for industry members to provide strategic advice and feedback on the design and implementation of the Industry Development Framework and action plan.  The reference group will influence the wider stakeholder group by creating awareness and capacity to identify future industry development needs.

The project will be rolled out in three phases

Phase One: Engage and consult with industry stakeholders to identify areas for capacity building
The department will work with the industry to determine its needs, generate ideas for development and identify opportunities to improve how housing assistance is delivered.  The partnership process will focus on the priorities that industry acknowledges as their drivers for continual improvement.  Ten initiatives will be undertaken to gain feedback, learnings and outcomes. These include QShelter forums, the reference group, industry-led forums and workshops. The evidence-based outcomes, and consultation with the reference group, will inform the development of the framework and action plan in Phase Two.
 
Phase Two: Build the capacity and capability of industry, based on the framework and the needs identified through Phase One
The department will deliver initiatives to create a strong industry including that will target the diverse range of housing and homelessness providers and deliver numerous opportunities for capacity and capability development and mechanisms for quality improvement.
 
Phase Three: Support industry led capacity development
As the industry grows and develops, so too does its capacity to take ownership of its future development needs. Phase Three is about building trust and openness among all stakeholders and empowering them to continue their development to grow as an industry.
  
How to get involved in the IDEP 

The department will carry out continuous engagement with key stakeholders including providers, representative bodies and other government agencies.  These activities will help to build effective relationships and improve business planning and performance.  IDEP encourages the housing assistance industry to participate in the process and provide feedback and opinions to help the Queensland Government create a stronger human services industry.  For further information on the IDEP please call 07 3227 6078.



Compliance under the NRSCH 
Consultation extended
New providers registered
Compliance under the NRSCH
Book now for Q Shelter’s Webinar on the next steps for Queensland.
This webinar will feature Mark Francis, Registrar of Queensland, presenting how compliance under the NRSCH is being rolled out in Queensland. There will also be the opportunity to learn about key findings from a pilot compliance program carried out by the NSW Office of the Registrar earlier this year.

The webinar will be held on Tuesday 20 October between 2pm and 3pm.  

Extension of consultation period under the NRSCH Compliance Pilot Review
To allow sufficient time for interested stakeholders to review and comment, the consultation period has been extended to 21 September 2015. Feedback on the NRSCH Compliance Pilot Review is to be sent to housingnational.regulatorysystem@facs.nsw.gov.au

New providers registered
There now are 30 community housing providers registered under the NRSCH in Queensland,  including three Tier 1 providers, nine Tier 2 providers, and 18 Tier 3 providers.  Congratulations to new providers registered since May this year:
  • Mangrove Housing Limited
  • Allamanda Autistic Adult Accommodation Assoc Inc
  • Community Accommodation and Support Agency Inc (Mackay)
  • The Dalby and District Aged Persons Homes Assoc
  • Maryborough Aboriginal Corporation for Housing and Cultural Development
  • Rockhampton and Environs Affordable Community Housing Ltd
  • YFS Ltd.


New date for Gympie workshops
Introducing good governance 
QCAT training
New date for Gympie tenancy law and tenancy sustainment workshop
Wednesday 14 October
Q Shelter is offering an exciting opportunity to come together to learn about tenancy law and share best practice with experts and colleagues on sustaining tenancies in community housing.
 
The full day workshop is designed for staff who provide tenancy management to tenants in community housing. The Tenancy Law session will be presented by the Residential Tenancies Authority and the Tenancy Sustainment session will be presented by Fiona Caniglia, Q Shelter.
 
Gympie
Date: Wednesday 14 October
Time: 9.30 am to 4:00 pm
Venue: Araluen Retreat
28 Fraser Road, Gympie 
Cost:
Full day including lunch: $30
RTA session only: $10
Q Shelter session only: $10

Registrations close Friday 9 October  2015.  

Coming Soon: Introducing Good Governance
Q Shelter is pleased to announce a series of webinars designed to support the use of Q Shelter’s Manual, Governance for Community Housing Organisations: An Introductory Guide.
 
The webinars are aimed at refreshing existing Board/ Committee members on their skills and responsibilities and inducting new members to their responsibilities.
Sessions will be :
  • Who’s in charge around here? Governance and the Board
  • Setting the Direction: Strategic, Operational and Risk Planning
  • Getting the Job Done: Staff, Volunteers, Delegation and Honesty
  • On the Right Side of the Law: Compliance
  • A Long Way from Anywhere: Applying Governance Principles in Rural and Remote Communities.
Webinars are scheduled for five Thursdays between 5 November and 3 December 6pm-7pm. The facilitator is Jon Eastgate of 99 Consulting, for Q Shelter.
 
For more information contact Clare Phythian at clare.phythian@qshelter.asn.au or phone 3831 5900.

New training on QCAT coming soon
Following on from the tenancy law workshops, we have received many requests to run training on QCAT. In response, Q Shelter will be running the following training, starting in Brisbane in November, and to be scheduled for regional locations during 2016.

Representing your organisation at QCAT
Do you need to represent your social housing organisation at the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT)? This one day professional development workshop will explore issues related to collecting and presenting evidence at the Tribunal and then implementing the outcomes.
 
Through the review of actual cases and your own examples, we will provide a practical perspective of:
  • how you can prepare to effectively represent your organisation at QCAT
  • what happens when you attend the Tribunal
  • what happens afterwards - follow up actions and implementation of the results of the hearing.
This workshop is for all social housing workers who represent their organisations at QCAT.  Training will be provided by Margaret Ponting Consulting.
 
Check our website in the coming weeks for details of dates and locations, and please email Jane.West@qshelter.asn.au if you would like to be notified once dates and venues have been finalised.


National social housing survey
Providers position for opportunities
Tiny houses study


 

National social housing survey shows tenant satisfaction 
The 2014 National Social Housing Survey (AIHW) has just been released with great insights into the levels of satisfaction of tenants in public and community housing, including: 

  • 73 percent of tenants surveyed indicated an overall level of satisfaction with the services provided by the organisation managing their housing.
  • 82 percent of tenants lived in a dwelling of an acceptable standard with working facilities and few structural problems. 
  • While 5 percent of social housing dwellings were overcrowded, (a situation much more common in State owned and managed Indigenous housing) underutilisation was much more common. 
  • One in five public housing dwellings were underutilised while one in seven community housing dwellings were underutilised.  
  • Almost half of tenants surveyed were unable to work and 62 percent of tenants in Indigenous housing were full-time parents or carers. 
Leading not-for-profit housing providers position themselves for opportunities
AHURI has released a report:  No. 237: Strategies of Australia’s leading not-for-profit housing providers: a national study and international comparisonIt is the final report of a three-year project which investigated how larger housing NFP organisations in Australia have been developing and positioning themselves for future opportunities and challenges.  
 
Could tiny houses be a solution to homelessness?
Cate Mingoya’s master’s degree paper called Building Together. Tiny House Villages for the Homeless: A Comparative Case Study looks at tiny houses as an option to help the more than 600,000 Americans who do not have anywhere to live.  



Business structures
 
Business structures 
Q Shelter aims to strengthen the capacity for collaborative work in the community housing sector, resulting in stronger organisations and better tenant outcomes. 

There are a number of tools and resources to support providers in their consideration of the way in which they structure themselves. Examples include the Q Shelter Mergers and Amalgamations Guide, a Partnership Evaluation Guide along with case studies.

These complement and can be used in conjunction with the Department of Housing's soon to be published Business Structures Guide. This guide has been produced and rolled out in conjunction with workshops across the State over the past month. Q Shelter can provide services to support organisations through this process and further support and resources in this area are being designed, so please contact us to have your say. For more information visit:
http://www.qshelter.asn.au/resources/businessstructures/
Finance Officer - BABI Youth and Family Service Inc
Part-time – 12 hours per week.
Closing date Sunday 20 September
Financial management, including payroll, in a not-for-profit environment:
  •          Proficient in MYOB to a high level
  •          Ability to analyse and communicate financial data, including budgets and cash flow projections
  •          Ability to prepare financial accounts for presentation to Auditor
Great role as Finance Officer for this long established Not-for-Profit located in Wynnum. For a full position description please email admin@babi.org.au or phone 3393 4176.
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