The Australian Federation of Deaf Societies (AFDS) comprising member organisations Deaf Can Do (S.A), Deaf Services Queensland, West Australian Deaf Society, The Deaf Society (NSW), and Vicdeaf, incorporating Tasdeaf, recently undertook a review of AFDS, its purpose and future directions.
The review was initiated in light of the welcome but unprecedented changes for Deaf and hard of Hearing Australians under the National Disability Insurance Scheme, the broader reforms in policy and funding across Australia, impending deregulation and competition. This was combined with the changing expectations of our clients, their families and the wider Deaf community.
Additionally, whilst AFDS has been in existence for just over 40 years, it was agreed that a more contemporary and relevant model of partnership across the Deaf Societies should be explored.
As a result, AFDS sought voluntary cancellation of registration as an association and will move forward, drawing on the collective strengths of each Deaf Society, to create a refreshed collaboration and partnership approach.
This approach will focus on national effort across the following key areas:
- Forming Strategic Alliances –our partnerships are strategic and purposeful to achieve our outcomes
- Evidence Based decision making –our effort, investment and focus is based on data and research
- Thought leadership –we strive to be the foremost experts in services and issues for deaf and hard of hearing people
- Co-design-our approach enables a wide range of people to make a creative contribution in the formulation and solution of problems.
The CEOs of each of the Deaf Societies are currently developing a strategic plan for the new alliance and further information will be provided in due course.
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