Pooled funds allow flexible approaches to youth homelessness.
Since 2002, four Supported Accommodation and Assistance Program (SAAP) agencies in the Sunshine Coast region have shared a pool of additional funding, which they have applied to individual responses for young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Through a formal cooperative working agreement, the partner agencies are able to use funds to provide additional support beyond that available through existing funding, to help high-needs clients avoid homelessness. Funds are used for diverse purposes including intensive youth worker support, short-term payments for accommodation, or provision of a service that is critical to their accommodation stability.
Project enhances sector cooperation, coordination and collaborative efforts.
The Cairns Social Housing Viability Project emerged through an increasing need at the local sector level, to undertake cooperative, coordinated and collaborative efforts in more informed and effective ways; and broader policy initiatives occurring in both the housing and homelessness sectors.
A commitment to re-learning how to creatively thrive (not merely survive!) at the edge of ongoing changes to organise into higher levels of coherency and viability at the sector level was a core vision of the project. Action learning and research principles and methods were utilised to underpin and guide various stages of the project. The project was:
- funded through Department of Housing
- auspiced through Shelter Housing Action Cairns (SHAC)
- supported by a reference group of representatives from partnering services.
Internal and external partnerships close the gaps between clients and community.
Staff of the three programs which comprise Ipswich Community Access Disability Services (ICADS) go the extra mile to provide high-quality services to clients through a community development approach. ICADS functions as an integrated partnership within Ozcare and as a collaborative model of support in the wider community. Its success is based on bringing together relevant players who can provide a solution for each client if a gap is identified between the community and the client.
Focusing on the process rather than the destination brings results.
The Warwick Youth Accommodation Working Party brings together local stakeholders to develop responses to youth homelessness. After a shaky start in 2000, the group consulted the Queensland Youth Housing Coalition (QYHC) in 2003 to clarify the direction needed to improve services and solutions for young people.
After identifying service provision models, members developed a customised community placement model for Warwick. Funding from a local church will employ a coordinator for this early intervention program, which will provide support for young people and families experiencing conflict that could lead to homelessness.
Two years of preparation yields a high-quality, one-stop shop for people at risk of homelessness.
The Brisbane Homelessness Service Centre (BHSC) opened in January 2006 in Brisbanes inner south. It houses five partner agencies, each offering a specialist service to people experiencing homelessness. The agencies worked hard to realise their vision for an integrated service that is better able to respond to the complexities of homelessness.
Collaboration streamlines Hervey Bays response to youth unemployment.
The inception of a Youth Sector Network in 1996 was the start of collaborative efforts by Hervey Bay's youth agencies to address high youth unemployment.
Joint training calendar generates lasting results for disability organisations.
In 1997 a group of disability service organisations in Wide Bay/Burnett collaborated to improve training options for staff. By working together, these organisations have maximised access to training resources, systems and funding so staff can benefit from training tailored to the sector's local needs. Although the Wide Bay/Burnett Training Alliance no longer exists, three organisations still share resources and are contemplating shared administration functions and systems.
A coordinated community house brings new opportunities to South Mackay.
The George Street Neighbourhood Centre (GSNC) opened in 1989 because South Mackay lacked support services in the community. Now 13 programs operate from the centre and more than nine other community groups regularly use the centre. Although more services are needed in the area, there is no scope for the centres current operational resources to support further initiatives.
Collaboration yields accredited training for the disability sector.
In 2005 Focal Extended Inc (Focal) secured government funding to provide Certificate III Disability Work training to several agencies in the Ipswich region. Pre-existing collaborative relationships within the local disability sector prompted Focal to adopt a collaborative approach to training delivery. The result was satisfying for all parties, including staff who were previously hesitant about formal training.
A new model for delivering services reduces pressure on homeless people in Brisbane but highlights the challenge of moving from crisis responses to long-term solutions.
HART 4000 is a consortium of Brisbane-based welfare and community development agencies that collaborate to provide multiple access points for homeless people seeking help. A coordination team provides case coordination and homeless people can receive help from a variety of agencies without having to travel from service to service repeating their story and request. The consortiums goal is to focus on sustainable outcomes and tenancies; a challenge when faced with the extent of day-to-day need presented by the 891 people who used HART 4000 in its first 11 months of operation.
Disparate communities trial mentoring model to strengthen governance.
The Mackay Regional Council for Social Development (MRCSD) is developing a mentoring model to respond to community management committee needs in the hinterland mining towns of Moranbah, Dysart and Nebo.
The model will support committees under pressure because of regional characteristics and governance challenges in non-government organisations.
A working group of community and business sector representatives and an MRCSD worker lead the project.