Community Managers Network Blog

  • 24 Nov 2016 1:57 PM | Anonymous

    Our second one day Induction Workshop held on 10 November at Adelaide City Council, attracted 17 new and long term, rural and urban senior managers and practitioners.

    "It was great to learn how Community Development theory is applied through different projects and contexts”…."Guest speakers made it all real – with honesty about the trials and tribulations…", "it was totally relevant to my role..."

    This exciting program drew on resources including e-links and videos in the Working with Communities in Local Government e-kit, available on our website.

    We began with exploring the evolution of community development and local government since colonial times and the diversity of council services and approaches.

    Participants shared their experiences and challenges and engaged with a series of local government leaders giving real world examples from their vast and diverse experiences and knowledge. These included

    • How three different councils approached community development
    Colin Shackleford - Alexandrina Council
    Tracy Johnstone – Campbelltown City Council
    Joanne Menadue - City of Salisbury
    • Cr and former Adelaide Deputy Lord Mayor Sue Clearihan challenging us with different and positive approaches to dealing with conflict, inertia, legal constraints and achieving positive outcomes in a local democracy.
    • Stuart Boyd, Adelaide City Council- how to foster creativity and innovative outcomes and deal with constraints and risk.

    Cam Opie

    Workshop Coordinator

  • 24 Nov 2016 1:50 PM | Anonymous

    The 2016 Community Managers Network Conference was held 25 October at the Thebarton Community Centre. The 55 participants learned how councils are reducing inequality through building resilient and engaged communities. 

    Keynote Speakers included:

    • Peter Kenyon the Founder of the Bank of I.D.E.A.S, social capitalist and community enthusiast who works in asset based community development
    • David Kelly – Project Lead Ageing, Youth and Communities at SAHMRI Wellbeing and Resilience Centre, an experienced strategist and program planner with a 30-year commitment to working with disempowered communities
    • Mayor, City of Charles Sturt, Angela Evans who talked about the importance of place making and the provision of inclusive places and spaces.

    At the close of the day each participant made a commitment to action through writing a letter to themselves that detailed what they would do differently, what they would stop and what they would keep differently. They will receive their letters in February 2017 to facilitate further reflection, planning and action.

    Terra Lea Ranson

    Chair of Community Managers Network

  • 27 Oct 2016 11:50 AM | Anonymous

    We are pleased to share that the Community Managers Network’s recent application for $50,000 from the LGA Research and Development Scheme for the Valuing Social Outcomes project has been successful. This is a project proposal that has been developed through the Community Managers Network as a sector-wide project. 

    The network itself will contribute a small amount of funds to the project along with four member councils. Local Government Professionals Australia, SA was the grant applicant and will manage the project funds.

    The project will run from October 2016 to December 2017. Its purpose is to conduct international research on defining, ascribing value to and articulating social outcomes to inform development of a toolkit to support evidence-based decision making and statements of social return regarding the community initiatives of SA councils.

    An in-kind link has been created with similar work that will be undertaken through the Wales School for Social Care Research, UK in order to consider leading international thought on social value.

    The project will build on previous work on the Community Development Evaluation Framework that was also developed with an LGA R&D grant.

    To add to the grant the Community Managers Network, City of Onkaparinga, City of Salisbury, City of Charles Sturt and City of Port Adelaide Enfield have also committed to co-fund the project. The Steering Group meets soon to begin the project planning.

    This is an exciting and ground breaking project that aims to support informed decision making about investments in achieving social outcomes and express the value of these to enable assessment of return.

    Mike Brown, 

    Project Coordinator

  • 21 Jun 2016 2:03 PM | Anonymous

    Our first one day Induction Workshop ‘Working with Communities’ attracted 24 rural and metro participants from 8 different professions from Horticultural Tradesperson to Director of Community Services with both new local government and long term professionals participating.

    This exciting initiative drew on the resources including links and videos in the Working with Communities in Local Government e-kit now available on our Network page for you to explore.

    The session explored the evolution and changes in community development and local government since colonial times and the diversity of council’s services and approaches which exist today. We discussed the importance of understanding our councils, our possible partners and the legislation relevant to our field in order to achieve positive outcomes. Theory and examples of practice of community development and working with diversity of communities were shared.

    Participants shared their own experiences and challenges and engaged with a series of guest speakers giving real world examples from their diverse experiences and knowledge. These included:
    •    How four different councils Murray Bridge, Onkaparinga, West Torrens and Charles Sturt approached community development
    •    Mayor Angela Evans challenging us with different and positive approaches to dealing with conflict, inertia, legal constraints and achieving positive outcomes in a local democracy
    •    Exploring with Joe Noone how to foster creativity and innovative outcomes and deal with constraints and blockages, using as an example the exciting “Fork in the Road” approach to enlivening the food business opportunities and cultural entertainment in Adelaide streets.

    Participants were stimulated and challenged by an enjoyable day and were left looking for more.

    Cam Opie
    Workshop Facilitator


  • 21 Jun 2016 11:58 AM | Anonymous

    The City of Tea Tree Gully and Campbelltown City Council will be holding a forum on Baby Boomer volunteering on Thursday 30 June 2016 from 9:30am to 3:00pm at the Marche Club, Darley Road, Paradise.  

    This event will be particularly useful for staff working with Baby Boomer volunteers and will explore the great value, needs and motivations of baby boom volunteers.

    Highlights of the event will include:

    - Bernard Salt, Australia's leading social commentator discussing how to harness the volunteer power of Baby Boomers in local communities.

    - A panel of experts debating "Which generation makes the best volunteer?" Will it be millennials, Gen Y, Gen X or the Baby Boomers?

    - Participation in interactive workshops for community members and volunteer managers.

    To  register and for further information please click here. 

  • 30 May 2016 11:55 AM | Anonymous

    The Local Government Professionals SA Community Managers Network has recently launched 'Local Government – Working With Communities – An Induction Guide'.

    Written by Professor Fiona Verity, this publication is an e-resource and aims to provide an accessible and flexible introduction to local government and community services for new staff.

    It will also be a valuable resource for non-community services staff and elected members, providing a practical overview of the nature and principles of community development and community work.

    The publication can be found on the Local Government Professionals SA website here

  • 30 May 2016 11:45 AM | Anonymous

    Written by Bronwyn Webster, Chair of the Community Managers Network

    The Australian Government announced significant reforms to home care in the 2015-16 Budget. The reforms will improve the way that home care services are delivered to older Australians and will be implemented in two stages.

    In the first stage, from 27 February 2017, funding for a home care package will follow the consumer. This will allow a consumer to choose a provider that is suited to them and to direct the funding to that provider. The consumer will also be able to change their provider if they wish, including if they move to another area to live. There will be a consistent national approach to prioritizing access to home care through the My Aged Care gateway.

    The second stage will build on these changes by integrating the Home Care Packages Programme and the Commonwealth Home Support Programme into a single care at home program. This will further simplify the way that services are delivered and funded. The intention is to introduce the new integrated program from July 2018.

    This will see the loss of bulk funding for agencies and all services will be delivered in a home care package model allowing the consumer to seek out their preferred provider.

    Concerns for local government as a result of these changes include:
    •         Loss of bulk funding has obvious budget implications for councils
    •         Ability to be able to remain competitive and deliver services
    •         Lack of recognition from the funding bodies of the high level in-kind contribution   local government provides- particularly in social programs and transport – High use of   volunteers that encourage citizenship
    •         Have the capacity to work in a business model which may operate in negative
    •         High volume of clients who currently receive a single low level service and may fall   through the gap
    •         Staffing without block funding to support wages

    The Community Managers Network is working with the LGA to develop a policy and advocacy strategy that will enable us to lobby the Commonwealth Government to ensure the unique services that are provided to our residents by Councils in South Australia can continue beyond 2018.

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