Cheryl Harris is CEO of Volunteering Sunshine Coast (VSC) at Maroochydore on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.
VSC is an incorporated community based not-for-profit organisation, whose core business is to provide volunteers to approximately 140 non-government organisations on the Sunshine Coast. VSC also offers training for managers, volunteer coordinators and volunteers.
The organisation works with a number of service providers, the State and National Volunteer Resource Centre, RTO’s, job networks, businesses, politicians, local council and Commonwealth Government in relation to advocacy issues and volunteers, expos, workshops, training, networking, linking people with services and linking service providers with each other.
“In the CEO position at VSC I meet and work with a diverse range of people and this enables me to do my job effectively, while building a stronger and connected community,” said Cheryl. “I love that I am able to give volunteers the opportunity to be involved in activities that reflect their interests and skills.”
Cheryl is President of the Maroochy Neighbourhood Centre and is also involved with the Coalition of Borards. She believes that such collaboration is a key driver of the work that she does. “By working together, boards can contribute to finding a way forward that builds on and adds to the strengths of the community sector.
“Alone, we are likely to take pathways that move ever further from our purposes, but together we can develop strategies, mobilise human resources, and strengthen our capacity for research and innovation.”
Like many organisations a key challenge is maintaining the sustainability of the organisation. Cheryl said, “VSC continues to provide quality services on the Sunshine Coast with limited funding. We are always looking at new innovative ways of how, in these sometimes challenging times, we can become more sustainable, thereby facilitating operational growth and reducing the dependency on government grants to better support regional community requirements.”
Cheryl’s goal is to enhance life on the Sunshine Coast by continuing to connect volunteers with organisations and agencies. “I feel that I have found my niche in life as I love the community sector.”