Friday 20 May 2022

A message from the Board of Neighbourhood Houses Victoria:

Dear members and stakeholders,

The NHVic Board wishes to advise you of an important announcement: our CEO Nicole Battle has accepted the position of Director Community Development at Alice Springs Town Council.

This is an amazing career opportunity for Nicole, and while we are sad to lose someone who has ably contributed so much to our sector, we are very excited for her as she embarks on this new challenge. 

Over the last four years Nicole has transformed Neighbourhood Houses Victoria into a high performing, modern peak body, delivering support, development and positive opportunities to its members. However, undoubtedly, Nicole’s lasting legacy will be pulling this sector through the toughest period in the state’s history. At a time when the sector needed clear direction, support and that morale boost to keep pushing through, Nicole and her team delivered. We're sure many of you would agree that Nicole’s pragmatic and calm leadership kept many of us steady during those really stressful and difficult times. 

But sustaining the sector throughout COVID is by no means the only noteworthy achievement Nicole leaves behind. Through her leadership, political advocacy, and the strategic relationships she has built, NHVic has:

  • secured high profile partnerships with State Government and other bodies to enhance the sector’s profile and funding streams e.g. Safe Seats Safe Kids, Power Saving Bonus, and partnerships with Carers Victoria, Good Shepherd, Museums Victoria, Victoria Law Foundation etc
  • implemented year-long professional development offerings including the Mentoring2Management course which has provided leadership training to just over 110 recent leaders
  • advocated in the Adult Community Education (ACE) space to help drive the Ministerial Statement for ACE
  • recorded its highest membership approval rating (88 per cent in 2020) since this data has been collected
  • grown our annual conferences. Our most recent conference in 2020, just prior to COVID, was NHVic’s most ambitious event yet, attracting 340 delegates, prominent sponsorships and guest speakers
  • introduced an annual sector awards program to recognise and celebrate excellence in community development practice 
  • As ANHCA President, Nicole has also led our national body and secured an ongoing partnership with Sidney Myer, funding over 100 community development projects across the country over the last three years.

Many would agree that Nicole has been an accessible leader, supporting Houses with visits and giving whatever assistance she and her team can provide. Her active participation on the ground means she has a strong understanding of the breadth of the work Houses do, and the challenges they face. This understanding has resulted in Nicole shaping a capable and multi skilled office at NHVic, and a new service in NHV Assist. 

The NHVic Board wishes to thank Nicole for her dedication and hard work in progressing the Neighbourhood House sector forward. Her support and guidance to the Board has been invaluable.

Nicole’s last day will be Friday 3 June. NHVic Chief Operating Officer Cameron MacRae will step in as Interim CEO while the Board undergoes a recruitment process.

Kind regards,
The NHVic Board