Volunteering Services Revitalisation Project

Volunteering Services Australia

As VSA expands to accommodate the needs and preferences of all people, regardless of their abilities or disabilities, we seek project-led support to review, advise and restructure our volunteering services portfolio using a co-design approach. This opportunity suits students enrolled in COM30001, MNG93003, HLT10595 and COM00471


Availability: Approved

Time required: 4 hours per week

Duration: 12 weeks


Requires face to face contact: Yes



VSA is Australia's largest provider of volunteering recruitment and support services. As we expand our offering to ensure that we can accommodate the needs and preferences of all people, regardless of their abilities or disabilities, we seek project-led support to review, advise and restructure our volunteering services portfolio. The project will ideally include the use of co-design and/ or human-centred design to create/ adjust business and services models which meet the needs and preferences of people supported by VSA.

The main aims of the project are:
• Commence a project which supports VSA to adapt, prototype, pilot and operationalise new business and service models which meet the needs of a more diverse range of stakeholders than are currently serviced by VSA;
• To identify and exploit efficiencies which blend existing VSA expertise with contemporary and innovative modes of volunteering recruitment and support;
• To review VSA's current business model, engage with stakeholders and ultimately recommend opportunities for improvement to drive ROI and SROI for stakeholders.


A new, fit for market business and service model (and supporting operational collateral) to recruit and support volunteers with diverse experiences, needs, preferences and abilities.

Needs to be addressed

People living with a disability are often excluded from mainstream opportunities – particularly employment. One subset of this exclusion is the ability to engage in volunteering practices, and particularly those which align with their strengths, preferences, careers and social ambitions.

This project will support VSA to adapt its current processes to meet the needs of individuals, drive ROI for the organisation, and enhance social impact at the individual/ service/ community levels.

In particular, this project will support existing VSA teams to align their thinking with contemporary notions of person-centred support and services. A culture exists which values established ways of working, and current operational constructs further embed this culture. An independent and innovative thinker would be beneficial to support the CEO to adapt the existing culture, to drive innovation within existing areas of traditional expertise, and create social impact for recipients of VSA’s services.

Benefits to students

• Working within a recognised Gold Coast organisation (VSA/ Volunteering Gold Coast);
• Working directly with the CEO, who has significant experience within disability services, advocacy, and has a strong focus on developing sustainable impactful services through use of Human-Centred Design methodologies;
• Working within an experienced independent social evaluation team (Ethos Evaluation & Design)
• Bringing together two socially impactful initiatives – significant literature demonstrates the social and economic value of volunteerism; similarly, with the introduction of the NDIS, people living with a disability have (finally) the opportunity to be empowered in ways which will support the attainment of individual goals and aspirations;
• Supporting cultural change processes, and obtaining direct experience in actualising change.


Southern Cross University

Two or three students who possess the above characteristics. A longer-term project may be required, though this perhaps can be discussed post-submission of this Application.


• Access and support from Executive management
• IT equipment, access to emails and internal policies, procedures and processes
• Access to service recipients and internal/ external stakeholders
• A confidentiality agreement would be required to be executed by students due to requirements to access confidential service recipient information.