Free Legal Information

These days we all need to watch our expenditure, non-profits especially.  One necessity that can be very costly is legal advice.  So we were excited to come across the Not-for-profit Law Information Hub which has been developed by Justice Connect.

The website contains information about Victorian, New South Wales and Commonwealth laws and has more than 80 topics covered from reporting to the government, insurance and risk, disputes and conflicts and running your organisation. They also regularly host webinars on many topics including legal issues for start-up charities.

Written in simple language so it is easy for us all to understand, the website has online tools to save time and help with legal problems that charities may be facing, along with continual updates on non-profit law.

This service will be useful for charities with the possible abolishment or changes to theAustralian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) being proposed.

The Hub will save time and money for rural charities which may not easily be able to access lawyers who specialise in non-profit law.

Funded through grants from the government, philanthropic funds, donations and their members the Hub has hundreds of thousands of visitors to the website each year.  Members also help non-profits providing free legal advice, training and assistance.

This is a great example of philanthropy, charity and pro bono resources working together.
Check out the Not-for-profit Law Information Hub.

legal hub website

Resolving Conflict with Volunteers

Volunteers are an integral part to many non-profit organisations, but as with all relationships, things don’t always go smoothly.

To help charities deal with and manage conflict, NSW Volunteering have recently released a Conflict Resolution Toolkit. The online kit aims to help organisations:

• Understand what conflict is;
• Learn how you can deal with conflict and;
• Find additional assistance to resolve your conflict

The toolkit forms part of a new trial service which focuses on helping with mediation between volunteers and organisations. As the toolkit suggests, “conflict can be challenging, but it can also be of benefit, and we can learn from it.”

For more information, you can find the Conflict Resolution Toolkit here.

Recruiting a Great Board

Board members are integral to every successful charity. Well, actually, let me rephrase that… Great board members are integral to every successful charity.

A recent webinar managed by magazine, Non Profit Quarterly, was held on this topic in the US last month.

Two governance experts, Vernetta Walker (from BoardSource) and Anasuya Sengupta (who is on the Board of NFP Quarterly), delivered the webinar and provide some fabulous insights into recruiting great board members.

The one hour webinar also has accompanying downloadable slides promises to guide you through the steps to ‘vastly enrich and improve your governance while minimizing the possibility of bringing non-functional or negative forces into your board room’.

View the webinar at the Non Profit Quarterly online.

Scholarships for the Non-Profit Sector

The Australian Scholarships Foundation (ASF) provides scholarships for the Australian not-for-profit sector and is the only organisation in the country that is dedicated to doing so.

The ASF uses their funding to focus on people, rather than programs.  They believe in investing in people, making leaders that can affect organisations ‘from the inside out’.

‘What if a donated dollar invested in people could multiply the NFP sector’s productivity many times that dollar and really boost much-needed social change?’

The AFS offers access to the Fulbright Professional Scholarship in Non-Profit Leadership.  It is valued at $36,000.  The scholarship allows a deserving candidate to further their development within the non-profit sector.

This an exceptional opportunity for personal, professional, and broader impact through research, experiential learning or management training at an approved U.S. institution or charitable organisation.

Find more out about Australian Scholarship Foundation.

What Impact are we Having?

The Centre for Social Impact 2The Centre for Social Impact has released a handy document called The Compass.  It is a thorough, yet simple guide to help organisations best measure the positive social impact they are having.

‘This guide is for everyone working towards the creation of positive social impact in Australia and who wants to know if they are making a difference.’

Identifying, evaluating and communicating our social outcomes is essential for all charities and this guide can be used as a tool to effectively do that. It will also help you learn the difference between outputs, outcomes and impact.

The Centre for Social Impact says:

‘We measure what matters, and The Compass is here to help you understand how you can measure what matters too.’

Get your hands on The Compass.

Building a Better Board

Building a Better Board

Most organisations would like to help improve their Board and the skills and knowledge of Board members. Better Boards may just help you do that.

Better Boards aim is to create positive impact through governance and leadership solutions. They have Australasia’s largest selection of governance and management titles for non-profit leaders. At their website you can find answers, examples, tools, advice and information, insights and inspiration.  There are lots of books, articles, surveys, seminars and news from the NFP sector.

They also hold master classes for you or your organisation’s board members to attend.  For example the last master class was on ‘Practical Governance & Leadership’.  These Classes are held in major cities across the country for your convenience. Better Boards holds an annual three day conference to share knowledge, learn and network.

Find more information about Better Boards.