The Go Goldfields Partnership has made great strides over recent years in finding ways for its priority areas to be championed across the community. Go Goldfields is a partnership of the local community, businesses and local services and policy makers working together to make sure that we realise our vision of; ‘Our community aspiring, achieving and living a full life.’
AS COLLABORATION BECOMES BUSINESS AS USUAL OUR YOUTH, ECONOMIC PARTICIPATION AND REDUCING FAMILY VIOLENCE WORK AREAS HAVE THE MATURITY TO CONTINUE, DRIVEN BY OTHER STRUCTURES IN OUR COMMUNITY.
In doing so, the Go Goldfields Partnership has refined its approach to put all of its effort into early childhood through the Children and Families Partnership. The Partnership will concentrate on ensuring that all children aged 0-5 and their families can access the friendship groups, networks, services and supports they need to be happy, healthy and hungry for learning achieving our aspiration of; ‘All children are confident, creative, safe and healthy’.
The move acknowledges that effort and investment during our children’s early years repay themselves many times over – in better lives and fairer, more prosperous futures.
The decision to refine is timed to amplify the benefits being created by:
- Our new partnership agreement with the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute Partnership to provide a robust evidence base and identify areas for collaboration;
- An increased capacity of the Shire’s Maternal Child Health services including the recent commencement of an enhanced service for home visits; and
- The roll-out of free three-year-old Kinder to the Shire as part of the Victorian Government’s Education State Reforms.
Most importantly, the Children and Families Partnership will be engaging with the community to build a collective vision and approach to ensuring Every Child, has Every Chance in the Central Goldfields Shire.
In Central Goldfields, we benefit from the commitment, creativity and collaboration of community groups, social groups, action groups, business networks, mothers groups, youth clusters, and professional or peer-to-peer networks. With a single on focus on improving outcomes for all of our families with young kids, we can make this one of the best places in all of Australia to raise a family.
This month Go Goldfields celebrates a significant realignment that sees the official transition of three of four areas of work into alternative community leadership partnerships that will strengthen shared-power structures and increase goal implementation;
The succession of the YOUTH IMPACT WORK: The Central Goldfields Shire Council will take a lead role to ensure collaboration in addressing continued support for youth with complex needs, decreasing social isolation and disconnection from education and employment through the Community Wellbeing directorate. It will continue to support the partnership work of the newly renamed Central Goldfields Youth Alliance by bringing key organisations together regularly and developing partnership responses to local issues.
The succession of the ECONOMIC PARTICIPATION IMPACT WORK: The Central Goldfields Shire Councils’ recently released Economic Development Strategy, together with its support for the development of the Committee for Maryborough, will address the alignment of work readiness skills with employment needs, and building employer understanding of diverse needs. Although the Employment, Education, and Training Action Group will no longer convene this work will continue.
The succession of the FAMILY SAFETY IMPACT WORK: Go Goldfields recognises that shifting gender-based violence must remain a key priority. Go Goldfields recognises the successes of the family violence prevention work of the Tipping The Scales justice project led by the Loddon Campaspe Community Legal Centre, the significant roles of Police and the Centre for Non-Violence, that of community groups such as Maryborough Rotary and Zonta Club Maryborough and the Central Goldfields Shire Council. It is important to continue the shire-wide focus on the prevention of family violence and the broader goals of working towards gender equity.
The Collaborative Table will continue to guide the overall Go Goldfields strategy. The Children and Families Partnership will continue to act as the reference group for the work and to hold the broader shared agenda, and the Backbone Organisation (Central Goldfields Shire Council) will ensure that appropriate skills and dedicated resources are available.
Go Goldfields will continue to use a collective impact approach to guide the next phase. The collaboration will refine our shared goals and plans to achieve them. We will measure progress, reflect on data and learn strategically from continuous reflection.
As we farewell Sandra Hamilton thank her for her dedication to the initiative, we also welcome Carolyn Bartholomeusz to the role of Acting Manager Go Goldfields. Carolyn has come on board for the next three months to lend her expertise to develop the next phase of the Go Goldfields work. Carolyn has a long history of enabling community-led work with both a practical and policy lens in the Victorian Government, most recently holding a regional leadership role in support of government reform work led through Department of Premier in Cabinet.
The Collaborative Table and the Backbone Organisation express their thanks and gratitude to all those who have volunteered their time, commitment, and excellence to the aspirations of the Go Goldfields partnership groups over the years. Go Goldfields will continue to work with our collaborative partners as we all strive to work together for positive change.
General Manager, Community Wellbeing
Central Goldfields Shire Council, Victoria, Australia