Project Description

NEWSLETTER | March 2020

Positive Solutions has had a productive start to 2020 with the continuation of current projects and the commencement of several new projects. This work will see Director David Fishel travel to Melbourne, Geelong, Sydney, Port Macquarie, Wangaratta and across South East Queensland working with our clients to progress new initiatives, governance reviews and strategic planning. Positive Solutions continues to champion arts and culture, not for profit business and best practice in governance and organisational sustainability.  We look forward to sharing this work with you as it unfolds across the year on our social media and via our newsletters.

Featured Project

Heritage Council NSW

Positive Solutions, with the support of The Maytrix Group, was engaged by the Heritage Council of NSW to undertake a review of the purpose and practice of Conservation Management Plans (CMPs) in NSW. CMPs are valuable tools for the preservation and care of heritage assets. Normally prepared by heritage consultants, architects or other specialists, CMPs have tended to become increasingly complex and lengthy documents.  Positive Solutions undertook benchmark research nationally and internationally to compare CMPs’ development and use elsewhere. This research was complimented with wide-ranging consultation through interviews with stakeholders, facilitated discussion groups and a sector-wide survey.

Positive Solutions provided a findings paper and options paper highlighting key themes and approaches for the future. The project continues to mid-2020, when a preferred approach and a suite of tools and resources will have been developed.

Current Projects

Port Macquarie Hastings Council Cultural Economy Plan 

In 2020 Positive Solutions is engaged to research, seek input from the community and generate a Cultural Economy plan for Port Macquarie Hastings Council with support from The Maytrix Group. The Cultural Economy Plan is an extension of existing council policies supporting art and culture, community, tourism and economic development. The plan will be developed in close consultation with local council staff, creative communities and local business. Key outcomes of this work will be a facilities and infrastructure mapping and a skills audit, informing recommendations to council on strategies in the Creative Economy plan.

Monash Integrated cultural precinct business case with The Maytrix Group

Positive Solutions is assisting The Maytrix Group with a Feasibility Study for an Integrated Cultural Precinct for the City of Monash. The precinct will see the Monash Gallery of Art, Wheelers Hill Library and surrounding landscape and sculpture park transformed into an arts and educational centre of excellence. The Monash Gallery of Art is Australia’s premiere cultural facility for the collection and exhibition of photography, and a key figure in the public galleries network. Positive Solutions is assisting with the Vision, Needs Analysis and preliminary and final Business Case of this exciting transformation for the south-east region of Melbourne. To stay up to date with our work on this project head to The Maytrix Group Instagram account and Positive Solutions Facebook page.

Queensland Country Women’s Association governance advice 

Positive Solutions has worked with Queensland Health supporting over 25 organisations with strategic planning, fundraising advice, governance reviews and board training. In 2019 Queensland Health engaged Positive Solutions to provide governance support for the Queensland Country Women’s Association project Country Kitchens. This involved interviews with the Board and key staff, a review of existing documentation and internal processes. Advice was provided on improvements to planning, reporting and communications.

Geelong Arts and Cultural Strategy 

Positive Solutions is thrilled to have been appointed to assist with development of the Geelong Arts and Cultural Strategy. With our history in supporting local governments in Victoria, we are delighted to work with the City of Greater Geelong at a time of tremendous development in the City. Positive Solutions will advise on and support community engagement, and the development of recommendations and strategies. The sector research and engagement will commence in March followed by strategy and policy writing, anticipated for conclusion by September 2020.

Positive Solutions working with Sunshine Coast Council

Sunshine Coast Council Community Strategy Leadership Group Recruitment  

Over the past 18 months Positive Solutions has worked with the Sunshine Coast Regional Council on a suite of projects supporting development of arts and culture in the region. Positive Solutions is now assisting Council with recruitment of a Community Strategy Leadership Group, who will help Council with implementation of the Sunshine Coast Community Strategy 2019- 2041.

Sunshine Coast Heritage Plan Review

In 2019 Sunshine Coast Council Cultural Heritage Services engaged Positive Solutions to review the existing Heritage Plan. Positive Solutions reviewed documentation and facilitated consultation sessions with the Sunshine Coast Heritage sector involving museum association representatives, heritage consultants, museum professional associations and First nations Peoples as well as the Heritage Reference Group.

Recently Completed Projects

PA Research Foundation

The PA Research Foundation is a philanthropic entity supporting the Princess Alexander Hospital, the Foundation has funded ground-breaking medical research. Positive Solutions was engaged by the PA Research Foundation to review their governance, and ensure their full compliance with the Hospital Foundations Act.  In addition to board interviews and a comprehensive review of documentation, we benchmarked the governance and reporting practices of other hospital foundations.  Our report was well-received by the Foundation board and CEO.

Equestrian SA

The SA Government and Equestrian SA, a leading body in equestrian sport and recreation, engaged Positive Solutions to undertake a review of the efficacy, fitness-for-purpose and sustainability of the Association’s current governance framework. The review was led by David Fishel, Director of Positive Solutions. Through this process Positive Solutions advised on a range of areas including maximising the organisation through greater connection with the national body Equestrian Australia, reviewed existing organisational documents and identifying the need and scope for an annual operation plans, a review of the delegations policy, the generation of full job descriptions for board members, and establishing an induction process for board members with periodic professional development. Additionally, Positive Solutions identified policy gaps and provided a schedule for drafting.  From this work a findings and recommendations paper was provided to ESA and has since been adopted.

Irrigators Council NSW

The NSW Irrigators Council is the peak body for irrigator farmers across New South Wales. Positive Solutions was engaged to provide advice on board performance and governance arrangements’. This was to ensure that the current Governance framework was fit for purpose, met compliance obligations. In consultation with the Governance Committee, Positive Solutions undertook a review of existing documentation, board member interviews, and provided a status report on the organisation’s governance processes. A findings report and scheduled action plan was generated for board consideration and adoption.

Feasibility Study for the Redevelopment of Wangaratta Art Gallery

Positive Solutions recently completed a site selection and initial feasibility study with the support of The Maytrix Group, Kerstin Thompson Architects and Slattery.  The future needs of the Art Gallery were benchmarked against a range of other regional galleries, and six identified sites within Wangaratta were evaluated, with two shortlisted as the most suitable for future gallery development.

Art Gallery of Ballarat Governance Review

Positive Solutions was engaged to assist the Art Gallery of Ballarat and the City of Ballarat with advice on the most effective governance arrangements for the Gallery, including the Board, Foundation and the Association. Through benchmarking and hands-on involvement from key stakeholders in the Gallery, we reviewed the efficiency of their current governance and provided strategic direction to align the objectives of Gallery entities. Following this work Positive Solutions was further engaged to prepare a route map for implementation of the preferred option.

Other News

A Goodbye to BoardConnect

In 2008 Positive Solutions’ Directors Cathy Hunt and David Fishel established the BoardConnect brand, to highlight and focus the work we had been doing to support the boards of non-profit organisations – and two years later BoardConnect was set up as an independent non-profit organisation.  Since then BoardConnect has worked with hundreds of organisations in arts, health, welfare, sports, emergency services and many other fields.  Now, ten years later and with many changes in the non-profit environment and market, it has been agreed to wind up BoardConnect and continue our board development work under Positive Solutions.  We are very grateful to the board members who supported BoardConnect’s work – Heather Watson, David Knowles, Lynn Rowland, Jane Thornton and Aaron Dahl.

Follow us on Social Media 

Stay up to date with Positive Solutions projects, opportunities and resources by following us on our facebook page. If you are on Linkedin check out David Fishel’s profile and connect in here, as David and Positive Solutions team share provocations, articles, and travel updates from our clients across Australia.