In This Section:

Our History.

Our Vision & Mission.

Our Values & Code Of Conduct.

Awards & Recognition.

Our Structure.

Our Commitment To The Community.

















































































About Us:
Our History. Our Vision. Our Values. Our Code Of Conduct.

Our History
SkillsConnection Inc. is a non-government not-for-profit organisation providing training, business and disability services and venue hire.

Starting in 1979 as a sub-branch of the Barwon Regional Consultative Council of Community Services, in 1981 the organisation became the Colac Community Development Association Inc. (CCDA).

CCDA’s early focus was as a community-based self-help group operating from the Colac Community Centre, which the organisation managed from the mid 1980’s. In due course CCDA expanded its range of services by providing open and supported employment services.

In the early 1990’s CCDA was registered as a disability service provider with the Department of Human Services offering a range of disability support services. CCDA added new facilities to support this area of the enterprise.

In 1999 CCDA incorporated Colac Work Skills into its operations and acquired RTO status, which allowed it to offer a range of training and business services. In the same year CCDA purchased two of its main sites and began improvements to its properties and facilities to support this growth.

In the early 2000’s CCDA leased property adjoining the Colac Otway Performing Arts and Cultural Centre (COPACC) to build a theatre gallery which would become the home for its disability services Arts Connection, and a base to add further artistic diversity and value to the Colac and regional community.

In 2006 CCDA began implementation of a comprehensive management system covering human resources, performance management, administration, safety and quality.

In September 2007, CCDA became SkillsConnection.

SkillsConnection’s future direction is governed by an objective business planning process with our most recent plan covering 2010 to 2014.

Our Vision
SkillsConnection's over-arching vision is "Linking people with futures".

Our Mission
SkillsConnection seeks to fulfil this vision by:

  • Offering a diverse and relevant range of programs and services.
  • Facilitating new opportunities and initiatives.
  • Participating in partnerships, cooperative ventures and networks.
  • Responding to issues impacting on individuals and/or the community.

Our Values
SkillsConnection’s values are embodied in our code of conduct. The code specifies our minimum standards and describes behaviours that are intended to enhance and embody our business activities.
Everyone at SkillsConnection must understand and comply with this code, which applies equally to our Board, management and all employees.

Our Code of Conduct
Our code of conduct is not an attempt to tell people how to behave outside their role with SkillsConnection.
The code does not presume to influence anyone’s personal beliefs. Rather, the code encourages everyone in SkillsConnection to ask themselves, “what is the right thing to do?”.

  • We treat people with respect.
  • We are honest and transparent in all we do.
  • We are accountable for all our actions and their consequences.
  • We use our resources safely & responsibly.
  • We abide by the law and act accordingly in all aspects of our work.
  • We recognise the diversity, capability and potential of our community.

Awards and Recognition

Over the years we have received some extremely positive recognition.
A number of awards have been presented to us both as an organisation and to individual members of our staff including:

  • The South West Disability Network Direct Support Worker of the year 2005 (Sue Harrington).
  • The Community Enterprise Award in the Colac Otway Business Awards of 2007.
  • The Community Enterprise Award in the Powercor Great South Coast Business Awards of 2008.
  • The South West Disability Network Disability Support Worker of the year 2008 (Liz Graham).
  • Victorian Disability Sector Disability Support Worker of the year 2008 (Liz Graham).
  • The Special Event/Festivals Award in the Colac Otway Business Awards of 2010 for our Tools For Change Program.

Our Structure:

Our Management
SkillsConnection is governed by an elected board of management with members representing a cross-section of the local community.
The board's role in the management of the business is largely related to governance oversight, with day-to-day operational matters being the responsibility of the CEO and three senior managers with accountability for SkillsConnection's business units.

Structure Chart


Our Business Units
SkillsConnection is organised into two core business units supported by our corporate group:

Business Connection
Business Connection offers both fee-for-service and externally-funded skill and vocational training programs designed to meet individual and business needs as well as providing Disability Employment Network vocational services and support.

Community Connection
Community Connection provides services and programs specifically targeted towards people with disabilities which aim to empower individuals, develop skills, encourage choice-making and promote people's rights.

Corporate Support
SkillsConnection and its business units are supported by a corporate group which provides executive, financial and administrative support to the organisation.
This corporate group also manages all SkillsConnection properties and the short or long-term lease or hire of our office and training facilities.

Our commitment to community
As a service provider SkillsConnection works to empower our clients and enhance both their access and ability. We provide relevant and appropriate training, programs and activities and network with external services and agencies to create opportunities for our clients to achieve their goals.
We have implemented and operate within guidelines from anti-discrimination legislation and service standards that reflect fairness, equity and equal opportunity.
We seek to work with the community to create opportunities and initiatives that will add value. One of our recent initiatives took place in late 2006 when we implemented and facilitated a program intended to impact our young people positively and proactively.
This Tools for Change community initiative was a transition program designed to support students as they move from primary to secondary school by providing final year primary students with information, skills and new experiences which will enable them to manage better the challenging transition that faces them.
The successful implementation of Tools for Change provided a tangible example of our community coming together to benefit our young people. CCDA's implementation of Tools for Change was a first for Colac and a state first for Victoria.
We have conducted Tools for Change each year since 2006 and in 2007 extended the program to include outlying regional schools. This now brings the number of primary schools participating in Tools for Change in the Colac Otway region to 13.
SkillsConnection is very committed to this program and the value it can deliver. To this end we are prepared to share our experiences, learning, references and materials with organisations from other regions that genuinely want to implement the program in their own community.