GO GOLDFIELDS – A NEW YEAR WITH NEW OPPORTUNITIES

Sandra Hamilton, Manager of Go Goldfields, presenting at
ChangeFest in Mt Druitt – Western Sydney, November 2019

WELCOME TO THE NEW YEAR AND A NEW DECADE! I AM DELIGHTED TO BE AUTHORING THE FIRST IN OUR SERIES OF BLOGS THIS YEAR.

2020 is a new year of possibilities with many new opportunities coming our way in Go Goldfields through invigorated partnerships. We continue to listen with authenticity to our community about what is working and what changes are needed to achieve our shared vision of ‘Our community aspiring, achieving and living a full life’.

WE ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO THINK DEEPLY AND DIFFERENTLY ABOUT WAYS TO IMPROVE THE LIVES OF CHILDREN, YOUTH AND FAMILIES IN THE CENTRAL GOLDFIELDS SHIRE.

Many of you have been involved in the review of the Go Goldfields work in 2018 and 2019 through your involvement in conversations about structure, data, funding or strategic direction. Our Impact Area Partnership groups; Children & Families, Youth, Family Safety, and Economic Participation are always guided by our community-driven aspiration statements. The dedicated volunteers that make up these groups have collaborated on many activities designed to achieve the aligned goals, which ultimately shift the needle and demonstrates positive change.

This is evident in the success of the recent shire-wide program for 16 Days of Activism led by our Family Violence Action Group and the launch of an integrated youth services ‘Pop-Up Youth Hub’ initiated by our Youth Services Alliance, to name a couple.

The Children and Families Partnership remains focused on working towards ensuring all children and families actively engage in Maternal Child Health key ages and stages visits, participate in playgroups, Kindergarten and are ‘school ready’. This year we have worked with Murdoch Children’s Research Institute to better understand the early year’s services on offer to children in the shire. This has afforded a significant opportunity for services and community to be in the same room and to understand existing successes and gaps, and to work together to improve outcomes for children.

Pop-Up Youth Hub community information launch, October 2019

OUR COLLABORATIVE APPROACH BRINGS DIVERSE SETS OF PEOPLE TOGETHER TO CO-DESIGN SOLUTIONS TO ISSUES THAT ARE UNIQUE TO OUR COMMUNITY.

We continue to build capacity by identifying existing capabilities and gaps and to assist in targeting resources to bring about integral transformation. We identify who the ‘influencers’ are and advocate for additional resources and systems change needed to achieve better outcomes for children, youth and families. Our biggest challenges sit in the space between our strategic, evidence-based advocacy and implementation, which can only be achieved where stable structures are in place, and where active listening is present.

We use data to monitor and measure the impact of our collective efforts and I am delighted to be sharing these community-driven indicators in a revised and updated set of Data Dashboards and relating Fast Fact sheets very soon.

THE LEGACY OF GO GOLDFIELDS EXTENDS BEYOND THE HAPPENINGS OF ONE YEAR.

I have been delighted to hear of the impact of the ‘Short Flix Festival’ in 2018 on a number of inspiring young people in the shire. Participants have progressed their creative journeys, and reaped the rewards of their hard work, with some winning prestigious national awards for the films created in this initiative. Building on the skills learned through expert mentorship many of the participants are engaged in further studies in media and sound engineering and some have gone on to gain entry into University this year.

I recently visited Bealiba Primary School where students were each presented with copies of the book they had created, titled ‘Benjamin in Bealiba’ funded by Go Goldfields as part of our arts and literacy agendas under our pubic art ‘Story Seats’ project. Their pride was visible and the book will act as a memento of the project and more importantly, as an inspiration for what they can do in the future.

Succession planning is underway and we look forward to working closely with catalytic change clusters from our local area to find sustainable futures for these kinds of initiatives and others.

GO GOLDFIELDS CONTINUES TO HONOUR OUR SPACE IN THE GROWING LANDSCAPE OF COLLECTIVE IMPACT IN AUSTRALIA.

We are continually humbled to be invited to share our learnings with our national and international community and we are thankful for the reciprocity of these exchanges amongst our peers. Australia is now home to over 100 collective impact sites. Our synergies are numerous but the one that is most common is our commitment to doing whatever it takes to work together towards a positive future.

Sandra Hamilton
Manager Social Inclusion & Go Goldfields
Central Goldfields Shire Council, Victoria, Australia

I HOPE YOU ENJOY MY ‘SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT’ ARTICLE BELOW…

“While collective impact may seem like a ‘codification of common sense’ (to quote West London Zone’s CEO), in practice there are many complexities to navigate. In the second of a two-part series, Tara Anderson explores what makes it work and what gets in the way.”

Source; Pro Bono Australia website

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