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About the Strengthening Community Governance Project

The Strengthening Community Governance Project began in 2017 and is steered by Rātā Foundation, Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council, Department of Internal Affairs, Volunteer Nelson, Te Pūtahitanga and community representatives.

There has been in-depth research commissioned by Rātā Foundation & Nelson City Council, and full community involvement. A comprehensive action plan has been developed and there is an engaged action group taking the project further. You can read Strengthening Community Governance in Nelson and Tasman report here.

Some initiatives to come out of the project so far are comprehensive professional development training opportunities, scoping of a research portal, Volunteer Nelson’s Governance CV system, and twelve Governance Bites workshops. See more below.

A good way to keep up to date with what is happening is to join the Strengthening Community Governance facebook group here. If you would like to find out about joining the action group, contact Community Partnerships Adviser, Scott Tambisari at Nelson City Council, [email protected].

September 2019 will see the launch of the next phase of the Strengthening Community Governance project; twelve monthly Governance Round Table sessions (see more below).

Upcoming Governance Events

Governance Round Table sessions 

Topic: Constitution Check-up (second half)

When: Tuesday 3rd December 2019 5:15 to 7:15pm

Where: NMIT, Nelson Campus

Cost: Free event – registration required


This is the fourth of 12 ‘deeper dive’ governance sessions where participants bring their experience and questions to share whilst tailoring knowledge gained to their own organisational needs. The Governance Round-tables are administered by Volunteering Nelson, on behalf of Strengthening Community Governance Nelson & Tasman, and are free thanks to funding from Rātā Foundation.

Following on from November’s Constitutions’ Clinic which covered half of the key elements essential for your constitution, December’s session will complete the topic – but you don’t have to have attended the first half to benefit from this session! Bring along with you any of your current recruitment tools, board job descriptions/expectations, and your constitution. Don’t worry if you actually don’t have some or all of these in writing yet, just bring what you have. This may be a chance to help you write up what you need. We will look at what it takes to make sure we not only get the best people on board, but help them operate at their peak performance.


This session will be led by Garth Nowland-Foreman, an experienced trainer and facilitator, and non-profit governance expert. Garth is a director of the LEAD Centre for Not for profit Governance & Leadership, and led the recent Governance Bites series in Nelson. The Governance Roundtables offers a deeper dive on the practicalities of common non-profit board dilemmas. Places are strictly limited (15) so we can sit around a table and together apply real-world improvements to our individual different boards, with the advantage of Garth’s extensive governance experience.

Dates for future Governance Round Table sessions:

Tuesday 28th January 2020
Tuesday 3rd March 2020
Tuesday 31st March 2020
Tuesday 5th May 2020
Tuesday 2nd June 2020
Tuesday 7th July 2020
Tuesday 4th August 2020
Tuesday 1st September 2020

If you are not currently a member of the Strengthening Community Governance in Nelson Tasman Facebook group and would like to be, or if you have any other questions, please contact Jane at Volunteer Nelson on 03 546 7681 or [email protected]

Governance Chat & Korero

An opportunity for those involved in not-for-profit Governance to further strengthen their skills and experience, to share, support and network within a peer group.

Designed to compliment the Governance Bites, Governance Round Table workshops and other work being done locally in this arena, these will be facilitated sessions (every second month) with presenters followed by the opportunity for kōrero and networking. Light refreshments will be provided.

First session: Tuesday 19th November 2019
Time: 5:30 to 7pm
Venue: Trafalgar Pavilion, Trafalgar Street, Nelson
Light refreshments provided
Cost: FREE – these sessions are funded by Nelson City Council
RSVP to [email protected] by 15th November please for catering purposes.

Megan Courtney from Inspiring Communities will facilitate the sessions, and the inaugural speaker will be Helen Watson, who will share some of her broad experience of governance issues before an opportunity for everyone to network.

Exploring Peer-To-Peer Opportunities in the Not-For-Profit sector in Whakatū

In order to build new peer-led governance support processes that would most effectively strengthen governance outcomes in Nelson Tasman, the Nelson Tasman governance community was invited to participate in a scoping exercise to identify what was most needed and how this should be delivered. A range of people active in community governance in Whakatu participated in exploratory 1-1 conversations in May-June, with a broad range of peer to peer governance support opportunities now identified for further discussion and prioritisation by the Community Governance Steering and Action Groups.   Follow the link to read the full report by Helen Watson on SCG Peer to Peer Connections.

Governance CVs

 Governance CVs

Those wishing to volunteer their skills and experience as a governance member for not-for-profit organisations can  complete a CV style profile here. Not-for-profit organisations searching for governance members with particular skill sets can search through the CVs, and Volunteer Nelson can connect organisations with volunteers.

Create a Governance CV

Want to let organisations know you are out there, and what your skills are? Take a few minutes to fill in a Governance CV style profile. Volunteer Nelson will add your CV to the published list on this website. Your contact details will be replaced with a unique ID. When an organisation responds to your CV, Volunteer Nelson will contact you, and you can choose whether to get in contact with that organisation.

To withdraw your CV please contact [email protected] or phone 03 546 7681.

Create a Governance CV

View Current Governance CVs

Are you a community organisation on the look out for board members? Are you looking for a board member with particular skills? Click on the button below to browse through our currently held Governance CVs.

Names and contact details are not published. Contact Volunteer Nelson with the Unique ID of the Governance CV and Volunteer Nelson will pass on your contact details to the person. Email Volunteer Nelson at [email protected] or phone 03 546 7681.

View Current Governance CV’s

Advertise for a Board Member

If you would like to advertise for a board member, you can use Volunteer Nelson’s free Volunteer Referral Service here or may want to consider the Institute of Directors ‘Director Vacancies’ here. There is a cost for the Institute of Director’s service but it is heavily discounted for non-profits.

Governance Resources

Volunteer Nelson have a collection of resources to do with governance that you might find useful. Click on the button below to access and browse the folder. Please feel free to make suggestions of resources you would like us to add to this collection, email [email protected].

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