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WILLING AND ABLE
Volunteering North Queensland Inc.
Unit 6/56 Charles Street, Aitkenvale
Telephone: (07) 4725 5990
Fax: (07) 4725 5996
Welcome to another year of Willing & Able! We're back with an edition packed full of details, news, information and maybe even a bit of fun thrown in for good measure. In this issue we have details of training workshops, the first Volunteer Managers Network Meeting for 2014, Sustainable Living podcasts, CIC Publications and 2 Gold Coast conferences, as well as Disaster Management info, including an article on cyclones also available on the VCRCG website. We also have important information from NBN Co about switching over to the NBN and why it's necessary for all households and businesses that use a landline telephone, not just the Internet. Sadly, we also bring you a message of farewell from VNQ's Training Development Officer of several years, Paula. There's also news of a new law on workplace bullying, as well as the renaming of Multicultural Affairs Queensland. Want more? As well as all our usual sections, we also highlight three Other Organisations and bring you some news about lapel pins for National Volunteer Week. All this and more, inside!
So I hope you will sit back, relax and enjoy this, the first edition of Willing and Able for 2014!
Credit where credit is due. Most of the information on the website and in this newsletter wouldn't be possible without the help of all the organisations who send VNQ information about special events or new resources that they want known. Thank you, all!
A special thanks to everyone who contributed articles especially written for this issue.
The Word for Today is:
Psycho-eco-auto-carbo-micro-hydro-bio-ergonomics: Growing small, comfortable, environmentally sound plants in soda water in the radiator of your mind.
"The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it."
"There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book and a tired man who wants a book to read."
"Books are lighthouses erected in the great sea of time."
Volunteer Managers Network Meeting & Training Session
Here are the details for the next Volunteer Managers Network Meeting & Training Session.
March 27 - 9:30am-12:00noon
Topic: Working with Volunteers from Diverse Cultural Backgrounds
Please RSVP to:
VNQ's Networking meetings are held bi-monthly and are a great opportunity for people in the community sector to meet each other, network and share their experiences, knowledge and learning. Attendees can suggest topics for discussion, guests or issues.
For more information, please contact VNQ on:
Farewell Message from Paula
It is with great sadness that I have left the role of Training Development Officer at VNQ after 6-7 years to concentrate on completing my studies in a Graduate Diploma of Teaching and Learning.
I have truly valued the opportunity to work with and support such a wide cross section of the North Queensland community. It has been a privilege to have met so many great people doing amazing work for their communities.
I thank you all for your support as it is the trainers, participants and support teams who have made the VNQ training program a success. Volunteering is a vital part of our lifestyle and I encourage you all to keep up the great work.
I look forward to crossing paths again in the future.
Hello Members and Friends,
Somebody said to me the other day that Change is essential to live and this observation seems to best sum up the start to 2014 for VNQ. Rather than start the New Year with new projects we are continuing with the volunteer referral project instigated last year in order to review our practices and better meet the volunteering needs of volunteers and the volunteer community.
The project steered by our Volunteer Referral Officer Bill Simpkins, aims to streamline the volunteer linking process and explore ways to respond to identified need to receive more personalized recruitment support for those members using the Volunteer Linking Data Base.
While we continue to deliver our day to day projects we will also be reviewing policies and procedures and legislative compliance.
VNQ training has also experienced a change with the resignation of Paula Johnson, who has steered the training program for several years. We thank Paula for her contribution.
While we look forward to the employment of a new Community Educator, Gerard Byrne, the facilitator of the VNQ Saturday morning series, will deliver the first 2014 session, "Submission Writing and Planning for 2014" on March 01.
In response to the changing needs of our community, part of the Submission Writing series presented by Gerard Byrne for Volunteering North Queensland, in partnership with the Hinchinbrook Shire Council, is now on Youtube at:
We look forward to working with you in 2014. If you have any queries regarding your volunteer program management or community education needs, have suggestion for future activities or would like to contribute to this newsletter, please let me know. Your input is valued.
"Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future" [ John F. Kennedy ]
Attached to this issue:
TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT
Core 2014 Training Program
Community Skilling Saturday Series
March 01 - Submission Writing
February 21 - Effective Communication (Ayr)
(further regional dates TBC throughout the year)
February 01 & 08
More details & training will be announced through the year on VNQ's Website - Training page.
Bookings Essential - limited places
For details or bookings contact:
The National Standards for best practice in management of volunteers is available for free download from the Volunteering Australia Website.
INFO FROM AROUND THE SECTOR
New Law - Workplace Bullying
The Federal Government is cracking down on workplace bullying and introducing an all-encompassing law that makes bullying conduct unlawful.
In Australia, the estimated cost of bullying is staggering. An inquiry into workplace bullying by an education and employment parliamentary committee found bullying costs the Australian economy up to $36 billion every year and that a workplace bullying case costs employers an average of $17,000 to $24,000 per claim.
But the government is now taking the fight against workplace bullying one step further, and from 1 January 2014 new workplace bullying laws will form part of the Fair Work Act 2009.
See more at:
Article reprinted with kind permission from Volunteering Sunshine Coast.
Original article from Pro Bono Australia.
Multicultural Affairs Queensland Renamed
The Multicultural Affairs Queensland branch within the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Multicultural Affairs has been renamed to Cultural Diversity Queensland.
Please note, it is only this one branch that has been renamed. The department's name remains as the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Multicultural Affairs.
This change came into effect on November 11, 2013.
For more details contact:
Volunteer Community Recovery Coordination Group
As we all know a couple of low pressure systems ran down the coast during the past month. One system was eventually named Cyclone DYLAN after it was well clear of Townsville. The other named EDNA was travelling a path which was never an immediate threat to Townsville.
There was a lot of media hype broadcasted and I was regularly reminded of the old saying, "Why ruin a good story with fact".
Unfortunately, it appears the media in their own unique way, managed to create a great degree of concern especially with some old folk, those new to Townsville, those where English is a second/third language and those residents that rely on medical/mental support visits.
VCRCG received an invitation from the Townsville's three Bunnings stores (a VCRCG partner) to give an overview relating to disaster readiness to their staff and questioning public. It was surprising to become aware of the number of public who are not cyclone prepared, have no knowledge of sand bagging, have no cyclone evacuation kit or the Townsville evacuation/flood maps. VCRCG gave out approximately 100 'Living in the North' pamphlets, printed and distributed approximately 200 'Emergency Kit Checklists' and explained to numerous questioning residents how to read the 'Townsville Storm Tide Evacuation Guide'.
VCRCG is about Community Helping Community and I know Bunnings is very community orientated. This combined activity, particularly immediately before a potential event, gave some community members an opportunity to get one on one advice in relation to Disaster/Emergency preparedness. Thank you Bunnings for taking the initiative.
2014 is planned to be a big year for the VCRCG. We will be looking for more community businesses, organisations and community groups to hold their hands up to assist their communities in times of Emergency and Disaster.
One of our biggest programs for 2014 will be direct community education. Member organisations of VNQ can assist their staff become better aware by programming a VCRCG awareness talk into their next staff meeting. The more people VCRCG reaches the more resilient our community becomes.
Visit the VNQ web page and view the VCRCG link, you will be surprised what is there that can help prepare your organisation and your staff with emergency/disaster planning.
VCRCG membership is FREE and is about what you or an organisation can bring to the table in times of Emergency/Disaster.
Cyclone Info from VCRCG
It's that time of the year again (the wet season). The cyclone path has commenced its march across Northern Australia. It would be reasonable to expect that within the coming months the north east coast/coral sea area will commence seeing cyclone activity.
This is a common event for the north and cyclone preparation, if not completed, MUST be started NOW before it becomes too late.
Produced as community information by the Volunteer Community Recovery Coordination Group.
Ph: 07- 4725 5990
Also available for download on their website at:
Sustainable Living Podcasts
Produced by the Townsville City Council, these podcasts on sustainable living cover these topics:
View them on the Council's Youtube account at:
Both Directories Package
Available for purchase from:
The first home phone and internet services are scheduled to be switched off and replaced by the NBN fibre network in parts of Aitkenvale and Mundingburra, from 23 May 2014.
The National Broadband Network (NBN) is an upgrade to Australia's existing telecommunications network and is replacing the existing landline phone and internet network (ADSL and Telstra cable) in parts of Aitkenvale and Mundingburra. So, in order to continue using these services, affected homes and businesses need to order a service over the NBN before the existing network is disconnected.
What do you need to do?
(Refer to the map linked at the bottom of the page.)
Residents who have special equipment that connects over a landline phone line, such as a monitored security or fire alarm, or medical monitoring device, should contact the supplier of the device or monitoring service for further advice on what needs to be done for it to work over the NBN as soon as possible and at the very latest at least four weeks prior to 23 May 2014.
My NBN Neighbour
For more information visit:
If you need an Interpreter, please call Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on Ph: 131 450 and ask for the NBN Co Contact Centre.
Article provided by NBN Co.
Map at: NBNComap.jpg
Scientists and Mathematicians in Schools - Volunteers Required!
Share your love of science or mathematics by volunteering with SMiS - Scientists and Mathematicians in School.
SMiS is a national program offering you the opportunity to make a difference to the science and mathematics education of primary and secondary students.
How it works: Individual scientists and mathematicians are partnered with individual teachers in long-term, professional partnerships.
Activities: Each partnership is flexible, unique and voluntary. The scientist and teacher decide how they will work together taking account of workloads, expertise, and class needs. This allows partners to develop their own style and may include hands-on activities, presentations, mentoring, emailing or video conferencing.
Time commitment: No fixed or minimum hours. It's up to the scientist and teacher to decide how to collaborate. Visits to the school may be once or twice a year, others are there once a week. Some use video conferencing and email.
Skill/experience required: A scientist or mathematician for this program includes any professional who is actively engaged in the fields of science, mathematics and/or technology. It includes research and applied scientists, engineers, IT professionals, medical practitioners, economists, statisticians and surveyors, amongst others. Generally a degree qualification in one or more of the fields, and currently working in a profession where science/mathematics is a major component of your work (including PhD candidates) is required.
To find out more about the program or to register your interest please visit:
If you have any questions, contact:
Jacinta Foley - SMiS Project Officer in NQLD
Deaf Services Queensland
Deaf Services Queensland run Auslan courses twice a year throughout Queensland. Here are the details for the first term in Townsville:
Auslan Classes - Townsville
For more details, or to find a class near you outside of Townsville, please contact:
Deaf Services Queensland
CORES are a not-for-profit community organisation that provide a counselling service for people suffering from depression, grief, thoughts of suicide and more.
Mob: 0427 455 313
Gold Coast Conferences
23rd International Association for Volunteer Effort - World Volunteer Conference
Bombo the Wonder Dog
VNQ are supporting our volunteer Suzi Vincent's fundraising venture to raise money for Legacy by selling the delightful children's book her husband, Tony, created during the last weeks of his life.
Tony died from metastatic melanoma originating from naval service during the Vietnam War. As a side affect, in the last six weeks of his life, he experienced heightened creativity due to changes in the brain: so began the adventures of Bombo the Wonder Dog.
Bombo, who resembles the family dog, is a very smart black dog. He has the kind of adventures that children and the young at heart dream of. Among other things he goes on a secret mission in nuclear submarine, a train trip in New South Wales and a plane ride over Antarctica - with 10% discount for other dogs!
Suzi and her children have lovely memories of this special time with Tony as he entertained them daily with Bombo's adventures. They are hoping to share some of them with you whilst at the same time supporting Legacy.
Bombo the Wonder Dog is a lovely story with many forms of transport throughout the book as they were Tony's (and Bombo's) passion. The book also carries a strong theme about caring for others and making people happy. It is suitable for boys and girls from pre-school age to lower primary school level, but everyone will enjoy it.
The book is beautifully illustrated in high gloss.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or
Please include your address and phone number if emailing orders.
NVW Lapel Pins
Lapel pins for National Volunteer Week 2014 are now available for purchase from Volunteering Australia in partnership with Beyond Bank Australia.
Cost: $1.50 per pin
Limited Numbers - order early and don't miss out!
Order from the Volunteering Australia web site at:
Spend any amount of time on any of the social media websites like Twitter, MySpace or Facebook and you will see any number of photos of people, places and especially children (proud parents are the worst offenders for this). But is putting those photos online really such a good idea?
When you post a photo on your social media website of choice, most of those sites allow you to choose who is able to view it. But how many people think that choosing 'friends only' or one particular group of their contacts (like a family group) will restrict the viewing of that photo to just those people and no others? The truth can be very different, and even quite frightening.
When someone posts a picture that anyone else can view, there's always the possibility that one or more of those people will 'share' it, or 'like' it, or 'retweet' it, or 'tag' it, or whatever else that website allows people to do with photos they can see. Depending on their settings when they do that, your photo could end up being seen by complete strangers, friends of friends of friends, even local people you don't personally know. The truth is, the moment you put any photo online, you immediately lose control of who will see it.
Any photo that could identify you or your location is potentially risky to put online. So every time you post a photo on a website, ask yourself this: 'Is this photo something I feel comfortable for complete strangers to see? Is there anything in this photo that could lead a stranger to knowing where I live, where my child goes to school or where I/my child frequently go?'
Be aware of what you share and keep yourself and your friends/family/children safe online and offline!
See you next issue!
Complaints - Ph: 1300 362 072;
Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman
Toll Free: 1800 062 058
ALL OMBUDSMAN SERVICES ARE FREE
Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland
Dispute Resolution Service
Office of Fair Trading - Qld Government
Don't forget VNQ's website is filled with information and links to all sorts of valuable resources.
Updated weekly - Special Events Page
Updated every issue - Newsletter Page
Updated recently - Training Page
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For information on special events in the local area, visit the Townsville Community Calendar, brought to you by the wonderful volunteers at the Community Information Centre.
Or visit the Special Events page on the VNQ website.
Disclaimer: Whilst every care has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information, VNQ takes no responsibility for any error, omission or other mistake. Information is correct as of the date of printing. Contact organisations concerned for further details.