GDAI Strategic Plan



Gippsland Disability Advocacy Incorporated (GDA) provides advocacy support, advice and referrals for people living with disability.

GDA has been a champion for the rights of people with disabilities since 1986. As the largest independent provider of professional advocacy services in the Gippsland region, we are dedicated to supporting and defending the interests of those who are marginalised and disadvantaged. We do this by matching individuals who lack access to advice or support with a trained advocate. In addition, our casework allows us to identify systemic and structural barriers to disability rights, which we use to inform our policy initiatives. We strive to create a more inclusive and fair society.

GDA is a community based Incorporated Association with full charity gift recipient status and is funded by the Department of Social Services and the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing to provide advocacy support, information, and referral to specialist services, to meet the needs of people with disability across the six regional local Government areas of Gippsland.

Organisational Values

  1. Human Rights
    We advocate for the fundamental rights of people living with disability. We strive to promote their dignity and equity in all aspects of our work.
  2. Empowerment
    We provide information and knowledge, build confidence and capacity, connect with community, share leadership, appreciate achievements, and support each other.
  3. Respect for All
    We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive environment. We believe that everyone deserves to be treated with respect, patience, and kindness. We are non-judgemental, and welcome diverse perspectives.
  4. Independent
    We operate without bias. We respect each client’s freedom to choose service providers that best meet their needs.
  5. Learning
    We engage in continuous learning and self-improvement. We embrace the dignity of risk and accept that everyone has the right to fail and learn from their mistakes.

Our Mission Statement

To advocate and promote social justice and equitable access for people living with disability.

Our Vision Statement

A local professional advocacy service driving change and empowering people living with disability to exercise their rights.

Goal 1: People

To maintain a culture that ensures the growth, health, well-being, and safety of our people.

Strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Provide a safe workplace that adheres to all relevant Occupational Health & Safety guidelines, promoting physical, emotional, and psychosocial safety.
  • Focus on the wellbeing of staff and board by developing a positive supervision procedure, proactively monitoring, and responding to need.
  • Staff and board have the skills, experience, and resources to successfully complete their roles.
  • Staff and board participate in regular training, professional development opportunities in line with needs and service development creating a learning culture.
  • Recruiting qualified and experienced board members and staff including succession planning.

Goal 2: Sustainability

To be environmentally and financially responsible so GDA can be viable into the future.

Financial strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Identify and seek diverse opportunities for funding and partnerships that align with GDA’s mission, vision, and values.
  • Diversify funding sources including Government, Community, and private sources.
  • Identify service gaps and funding opportunities and be ready to present a funding proposal when these opportunities arise.

Environmental strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Work in a way that is mindful of limited resources.
  • Reduce our carbon footprint by utilising sustainable resources at the organisational and individual level.

Goal 3: Community engagement and education

To raise community awareness and provide education of what advocacy is and the services GDA provides.

Strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Develop a communications/marketing and promotional plan that includes:
    • A clear definition of the role of Gippsland Disability Advocacy Inc.
    • An enhanced social media presence.
    • Targeted media and social media campaigns.
  • Participate in direct community engagement opportunities that raise the awareness of GDA i.e. community networks, community celebrations – field days, expo’s, etc.
  • Stakeholder engagement and participation.
  • Valuing and sharing stories of lived experience in the delivery of GDA services.

Goal 4: Service

To provide a professional responsive advocacy service for people with disability.

Strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Manage an intake service that prioritises according to need.
  • Be well resourced to respond to current need and have ability to adapt to changing advocacy support requirements.
  • Ensure a respectful and considerate approach to communication and work undertaken.
  • Ensure people with disability are empowered by accessing information on current legislation around disability, human rights and where to find appropriate resources.
  • To provide an environment that is respectful where clients feel valued and can safely share their story to develop a plan of action according to their needs.

Goal 5: Partnerships and representation

To work together with partners and allies to build stronger, inclusive communities across Gippsland.

Strategies – How we will achieve these.

  • Build on existing networks and collaborations by working closely with community service organisations including Local Government Areas to realise our current and potential networks / stakeholders.
  • Connect and collaborate with current and potential partners/stakeholders on systemic advocacy issues.
  • Identify opportunities for business development in partnership with stakeholders.