ABOUT US

Community Cohesion is a small team of skilled proffessionals. 

Darren ‘Aziz’ Cooper is the owner and principal at Community Cohesion. Aziz is a passionate intercultural and interfaith consultant, a skilled organiser and trainer, and an experienced development specialist.

His expertise is in engaging culturally, linguistically and religiously diverse communities. He is based in Melbourne and since 1990 has been involved in the design and implementation of a wide range of grassroots projects within Australia and overseas.

He has partnered with many community organisations and government agencies in capacity building, policy development, civic participation, planning to Prevent Violent Extremism (PVE) and in emergency management.

He offers unique perspectives and insights, and has a Master of Community Development (Emergency Management) from Southern Cross University.

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

“We engaged Aziz to lead the development of the Crisis Management & Recovery Plan. Aziz’s deep community and emergency management experience enabled us to build a proactive framework within which our Crisis Teams can manage, respond to and recover from a critical incident or situation.”

Hisham Moustafa , Manager, ICVEA 2010-2017

“Responding to community concerns, Aziz led the initial discussions that eventually led to the development of the Civil Disturbances & Social Emergencies Sub-Plan (now known as the Hostile Acts Plan). Over a two year period, he undertook situational analysis, scoping and concept design, consultations with the community, emergency services and council, and drafted the plan in line with council’s requirements to a point where it could be delivered to the MEMPC and developed further.”

Shadi Hanna, MRM, Darebin City Council

COLLABORATIVE EXPERIENCE

Organisations we have partnered with in varous roles

COMMUNITY, FAITH AND CULTURE

 

Brotherhood of St Laurence (2019-current)                                                                                                                                                                                            Araluen NDIS Provider (2020-2021)

Networks Australia Foundation (2017-current)
AMAFHH Federation (2017-current)
Darusalam Society (2015-current)
Darebin Interfaith Council (2013-2019)
Darebin Ethnic Communities Council (DECC) (2013-current)
Islamic Museum of Australia (2013-2019)
Chùa Linh Sơn Buddhist Temple (2013-2019)
Whittlesea Interfaith Network (WIN) (2013-current)
Islamic Society of Victoria (ISV), Preston Mosque (2008-current)
Benevolence Australia (2008-current)                                                                                                                                                                                              Sustainability Street (2003-2009)
Board of Imams in Victoria (2001-current)
Islamic Centre for Education & Development (ICED) (2000-Current)
East Reservoir Community Hub (2019)
Northern Community Churches of Christ (NCCC) (1999, 2016-2019)
Victorian Council of Churches (VCC) (2014-2019)
Jews Christians Muslims Association (JCMA) (2005, 2013-2019)
Faith Communities Council of Victoria (FCCV) (2015-2016)
Hobsons Bay Interfaith Group (2014-2016)
Australian Muslim Women’s Centre for Human Rights (AMWCHR) (2014)
Northern Intercultural Interfaith Network (NIIN) (2013-2016)
Australian National Imams Council (ANIC) (2006-2011)
Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) (2001-2011)
Islamic Council of Victoria (ICV) (1998-2011)
Victorian Cooperative on Children’s Services for Ethnic Groups (VICSEG) (1998-1999)
Spirituality Australia (2009)
Frontier Transformation Network (1990-2008)
Urban Neighbours of Hope (UNOH) (1999-2001)                                                                                                                                                                                  Disability Attendant Support Service (DASSI) (1999-2008)                                                                                                                                                                          Unicare (1994-1997)
Community Action Services (CAS) (1992-1998) 

Government, law enforcement, immigration and emergency services

Victorian Council of Churches Emergencies Ministries (VCCEM) (2011-current)
Victoria Police (2001-current)
Darebin City Council (2013-2019)
Darebin Municipal Emergency Management Planning Committee (2013-2019)
Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) (2013-2019)
Moreland Municipal Emergency Management Planning Committee (2011-2019)
Victorian Department of Premier & Cabinet (2008-2011, 2015-2018)
Whittlesea Municipal Emergency Management Planning Subcommittee (2011-2014)
Hobsons Bay City Council (2014-2016)
Melbourne Immigration Transit Accommodation (MITA) (2009-2011)
Australian Federal Police (2008-2011)
Federal Attorney-General’s Department (2008-2011)
Australian Multicultural Foundation (AMF) (2008-2011)
Maribyrnong Immigration Detention Centre (2004-2011)
Port Phillip Prison (G4S) (2002-2011)
Fulham Correctional Centre (GEO Group) (2003-2011)
Corrections Victoria (CV) (2001-2011)
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) (2003-2008)
Hume City Council (2008)
Victorian Multicultural Commission (VCM) (2002-2004)
Melbourne City Council Moomba Festival (2001)
Department of Immigration, Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (1999-2001)
Department of Immigration and Citizenship (1999-2001)
VicHealth (1999-2001)
Dutton Park Migrant Resource Centre (1991)
Yungaba Immigration Centre, Brisbane (1990-1993)

COLLABORATIONS, NETWORKS AND LOGISTICAL SUPPORT

Research Institute on Social Cohesion (RIOSC), Department of Premier and Cabinet (2017-current)
Palm Sunday Walk for Justice for Refugees (2018-current)
Centre for Resilient and Inclusive Societies (CRIS) (2018-current)
Resilience Special Interest Group, LGPro (2018-current)
Islamic Council of Victoria Emergency Assist (ICVEA) (2014-current)
2live 4give (2014-current)
Victorian Council of Churches Emergencies Ministry (VCCEM) (2011-current)
Peace Generation, Indonesian, Australia (2005-current)
Australian-Indonesian Muslim Leaders Exchange Program (AIMEP) (2003-current)
Back Your Neighbour campaign run by the Local Government Mayoral Taskforce Supporting People Seeking Asylum (2018-2019)
Northern Alliance councillors meetings (2018-2019)
Welcoming Cities Network consultations (2014-2019)
LGPro (2014)
Victorian Local Government Multicultural Issues Network (VLGMIN) (2013-2019)
North East Refugee Settlement Issues Network (NERSIN) (2013-2019)
Darebin Emergency Relief Network (DERN) (2013-2019)
VMC’s Northern Region advisory meetings (2018)
Muslim, Emergency Management Organisation (MEMO) (2009-2014)
Parliament of World Religions (2005-2009)
Chaplains Advisory Committee to the Criminal Justice Sector in Victoria (CAC) (2001-2011)
Fusion Australia (1992-1994) 
BRIAN (Brisbane Regional Internet Access Network) (1991-1994)

ACADEMIC, CORPORATE AND TRAINING

Brotherhood of St Laurence Cross Cultural Responsiveness Training (2019-current)
Centre Of Learning Opportunities (COLO) (2003-current)
Smash the Sky (2008-current)
Best Life (2008-current)
Box Hill Institute (2018)
Alfred Deakin Institute, Deakin University (2017-2018)
Global Terrorism Research Centre (GTReC), Monash University (2009-2011)
National Centre Of Excellence For Islamic Studies, University of Melbourne (2003-2010)
Asia Institute, University of Melbourne (2003-2010)
Network Overdrive (1998-2004)
Asia Cultural Study Tours (1990-1994)
India Adventure Tours (1990-1994)