The Gisborne East Coast Council of Social Services was established in 1990.
In April 2010 the Executive and membership of GISCOSS participated in a workshop facilitated by the Community Sector Taskforce. The Executive subsequently appointed a Working Group who presented a proposal to the membership to transform the organisation into a much broader entity.
The new entity would include a diverse membership from local civil society including environmental, sports, faith-based, education, housing, youth and aged sectors with increased participation by Tangata Whenua, Pasifika and ethnic minority groups. Following the demise of the Social Development Forum of the Tairawhiti Development Partnership and in the face of a truncated Local Government Act, the new entity would provide a strong, coherent voice for the community sector in Tairawhiti on issues of concern to regional development and Community Outcomes.
The project resulted in the change of name from GISCOSS to Tairāwhiti Community Voice and tidying up the Constitution to ensure the focus remains on positive social change, a collective voice and mutual support between local organisations.