Network News October 2016

Proposed Changes to the Incorporated Societies Act

Following on from the article of the same name in the April issue of this publication, we can let you know that a template to assist with the rewriting of constitutions is now available on our website at  This is a combined trust/society template so take out what doesn’t apply to your organisation. The template has been produced by the Southland Community Law Centre and updated to include the contact officer and mediation/arbitration requirements of the new Act.

The good news is that all changes will have a lengthy “Transition” period of at least two years. This will enable all incorporated societies to take time to revise their constitutions and ensure that they comply with the requirements of the new Act and Regulations once they are passed and put into place.

On the road again…

by Ros Rice, Executive Officer, Community Networks Aotearoa

Two things I love: going down South to where I grew up, and meeting people from C.N.A’s membership face to face. Lucky old me, I got to do both last week in my road trip around the Deep South.

Firstly let me encourage all of you to fly into Queenstown some time in your life in winter or springtime.  The flight dropping down below the snow covered peaks into the intense sunshine and clear air of Central Otago is awe inspiring and I couldn’t stop grinning. As a child my family used to drive up to Queenstown to stay with my granddad and I always feel this deep connection when I arrive there.

A fabulous drive through the Kawaru Gorge and then into Alexandra, another town I spent time in during my childhood. Staying with the beautiful Liz Duggan (Alexandra Blossom Festival Senior Queen) and dinner with Liz and Deidre, Secretary and Chair respectively of Alexandra Council of Social Services, followed by an early AGM the next day. Central Otago is blessed with amazing community minded people, and organisations that look out for people in their area. It’s an honour to meet with many of them.

However, not much time to spare as following the AGM, I was in the car and heading south to Invercargill. The countryside of Southland is green, lush and beautiful, so I took the route through Nightcaps to Gore to feast my eyes on the way. Gore to Invercargill is a quick trip again down memory lane but as hard as I looked I couldn’t see the recently collapsed vat at the Fonterra factory in Edendale.

I made it in time for the meeting in Invercargill at 2.30pm. I don’t think a lot of northern living people realise that Central is only a couple of hours away from Invercargill. Many of my school friends used to take jaunts up to Coronet Peak for a weekend’s skiing when I was a teenager.

I met another group of people who are dedicated and involved in the Southland community. I remembered this time to take a picture at the end of the meeting, although several had to leave before then. Lovely to see everyone, and I was able to hand out information and brochures and some of our C.N.A pens – I like bearing gifts 🙂

Next morning bright and early I was back on the road, heading back to Gore to meet with another C.N.A member, the Community Networking Trust. This had to be a fast meeting as I had another couple of hours on the road to get to Dunedin by midday to meet with people from Connect South. Yes, the Dunedin Council of Social Services (DCOSS) has rebranded. Not a lot of people, but it was just an informal chat, and that’s okay.

Then a couple of days with my daughter and grandchildren.  For the first time ever I stayed in an Airbnb. I got the use of a lovely little cottage all on my own for a very low cost.

Sunday (Day 5) I arrived back home in Wellington exhausted but worth every second. I believe it is important to meet people face to face and to find out what is happening for them. They also can meet me. Too often it is easy to sit in an office in Wellington and lose touch with membership, but C.N.A is ‘the voice of the regions’ and that voice needs to be authentic.

If you want a visit from me at any time.  Just contact C.N.A and if I can do it… I will.  See you soon.

On Air with Ros

Download and listen to Ros talk with Stephanie Clare the new CEO of Age Concern New Zealand.



Making written submissions to influence policy

(from Vol 55, September Issue 2016, Kumara Vine, Community Waikato)

Making submissions is an effective tool that anyone can use so that their voices and views are heard concerning government policies or legislation. It is worth the effort to set aside time to prepare, and to present, written and oral submissions about issues and causes that you are passionate about, and you believe needs change!

1. Define the Problem!
Firstly, it’s important to understand your own concerns about the changes you want made to policies or proposed legislation. So, ask these four key questions to help clarify your thinking and views:

WHY …is it a problem? WHO …is it a problem for? HOW …serious is the problem? WHAT…evidence do you have about the problem? What do you think are the causes?

2. Submission Tips! Keep these tips in mind for writing your submission:

Keep Focused – Stick to the terms of reference, questions or topics.

You are an Expert! – You know about your work, so use that to highlight ‘your point of difference’. Also, consider using your organisation’s values and/or mission as a ‘frame for analysis’.

Format – Be concise by using 3 to 5 key headings (unless reviewing a detailed Bill or plan). Also, it’s alright to simply write a ‘1-page’ or ‘1-paragraph’ submission, and instead, focus on your oral presentation if writing isn’t your strong point.

Content – Use evidence where you have it. Be honest about what you don’t know. Illustrate your submission by using true stories, pictures, photos, videos.

Style – Be positive where you can – don’t just be critical. Offer solutions where you can. Also, indicate if you want to present an oral submission.

3. Types of Information to use
Know that there is an array of information available for advocating and persuading your submission audience. So use information that is relevant and influential.

Knowledge: Local, traditional knowledge, consultation results from networks/groups.
Information: Existing policies, evaluations (Local, national or overseas), internet searches, published documents or reports.

Research: Evidence from research trials, analytical studies, long-term studies, qualitative studies, before and after studies, observations, experiences, case reports, and your own experience.

Ideas & interest: Opinions, views, ‘expert knowledge’ of individuals, groups, networks.

Politics: Government policy, information that fits current policies, political risk assessment, saleability, opportunities, crises.

Economics: Finance and resource implications, cost-effectiveness or other kinds of economic evaluation, opportunity cost studies.

Source: This article is based on workshop resources delivered by Keriata Stuart (Strategic Advisor, Māori Public Health, Public Health

Name Change for Dunedin Council of Social Services

Our member organisation Dunedin Council of Social Services is now called Connect South. They say their new name better reflects the work they do, supporting non profits in Dunedin and beyond.

For further info please visit

Forgotten to register for our upcoming Members’ Hui? Contact us TODAY and we may be able to sign you up – late registrations may be received until 5 October depending on space availability.

For full programme and registration form click here and don’t miss the opportunity to join us on Wednesday 19 October in Wellington.

When I get older losing my hair…

Saturday 1 October was the International Day of the Older Person. New Zealand’s first all-ages research into our attitudes towards ageing, produced by the Office for Seniors, makes interesting reading as we face the challenges and embrace the opportunities of our ageing communities. Click here to read the report.

To blog, or not to blog…

Here are the links to the latest ComVoices blog on Community Scoop. Interesting reading as always…
Community groups to be defacto arms of Government? by Trevor McGlinchey, Executive Officer, NZ Council of Christian Social Services
When can we talk about the money? by Tess Casey, CEO, Inclusive NZ
Why dilute responsibility for drinking water? by Warren Lindberg, CEO, Public Health Association

Upcoming Symposium, Webinar & Training

Connect, Inspire, Thrive 2016 – Community Waikato, 11 October, Hamilton Community Waikato are organising a one day symposium to connect, share ideas, mix and mingle. This is a learning and networking opportunity for community groups in the Waikato region. Register online at

Introduction to Results Based Accountability – Community Research, 11am 19 October, Webinar
Make a measurable difference. Learn about RBA from one of New Zealand’s experts. In this free, 60 minute webinar Sharon Shea will introduce the RBA methodology and explain how you can use it to show the impact of your work. Designed for community workers, researchers and managers who are new to RBA. For more info and to register click here

Mental Health and the Workplace and Building Resilient Teams – Vitae Education and Training Services, October, Various Locations
Commencing an introductory series of 1.5 hour workshops for Managers, HR specialists and Team Leaders. Limited places for each session are available (15 per session). Venues TBA – Taupo 26 October 1pm – 4.30pm; Whakatane 27 October 1pm – 4.30pm; Rotorua 28 October 9am – 12.30pm. For further info about this training and to express interest in similar training in your area please contact David Rodgers

And don’t forget, we’re here to help.  If you have any problems or issues, or just need some information, please don’t hesitate to contact Ros at the CNA office on Wellington (04) 472 3364 or  Both Ros and Fionn are here to provide support to our membership and always welcome your contact.

Photo: bruceandrobyn