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Connecting government services to improve community outcomes Establishing Victorian state-wide area based governance architecture Presentation to the VCOSS.

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Presentation on theme: "Connecting government services to improve community outcomes Establishing Victorian state-wide area based governance architecture Presentation to the VCOSS."— Presentation transcript:

1 Connecting government services to improve community outcomes Establishing Victorian state-wide area based governance architecture Presentation to the VCOSS - YACVic Building the Scaffold Forum 23 October

2 2 Government agencies are tasked with managing a complex mix of universal and targeted service systems for the purpose of achieving better social and economic outcomes for individuals, families and communities

3 Wicked problems: The case for change Community needs are often complex and multifaceted, requiring multiple interventions There is increasing awareness of areas of need or disadvantage that are specific to particular locations. Instances of concentrated, entrenched disadvantage (often presenting as “wicked problems”) are generally attributable to multiple contributing factors, requiring tailored, coordinated responses. There is also increasing awareness of the importance of local understanding and insight in the design and delivery of social services. Harnessing available knowledge of particular communities can allow universal platforms and services to be tailored to deliver stronger outcomes for families and communities Single government agencies cannot tackle complex social challenges as effectively as agencies working together. Tailoring programs and supports for specific communities, drawing on the resources of multiple agencies and existing local insights, has emerged as the leading method for improving community outcomes and tackling entrenched disadvantage. 3

4 4 The shifting paradigm of service delivery Old bureaucratic systems Planned centrally, delivered locally Addressing single symptoms/causes Deficit-based approach National or state-wide To the centre Single models of service offered to all Compliance/contracted outputs Modern enabling environment Planned locally, supported centrally Holistic, wrap-around approach to address multiple issues Strengths-based approach Place-based focus To the client/service recipient Choice, control and diversity to the service user Focus on outcomes delivered (using the evidence base) Locus of decision making Service focus Values Geography Accountability Service delivery Performance reporting Greater opportunity for organic systems, focus on early-intervention/prevention and partnerships with community sector organisations

5 The Victorian Government is pursuing the design and establishment of an area-based governance architecture, initially targeting vulnerable children and at-risk young people and their families under the auspice of Victoria’s Vulnerable Children Strategy 17 area-based social service governing boards would be created (aligned with new DHS regional structure), drawing together senior regional officials from key social policy agencies from State, Commonwealth and local government. The focus of the area-based governing bodies is intended to be on coordinated planning and collaboration, rather than the direct management of service delivery An Area Based Governance Architecture 5 Local problem identification and solutions Appropriate balance between flexibility and accountability Evidence-based through sharing of data Inclusive and adapted Integrated planning Outcomes orientated Create linkages from areas to centre Shared vision Clarity of roles and responsibilities Formal commitment (including through joint planning) Awareness of funding mechanisms Access to appropriate senior decision- makers Strong leadership at both central and local level Dedicated resourcing and/or support Guiding principles Critical success factors

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7 High-level Coordination Board Secretaries of social service departments Each area would identify 3- 4 priority issues. Time- limited working groups would be established to progress actions to address each priority issues 17 area-based governing boards aligned to DHS regional structure MembershipVIC DEECD and DHS (co-chairs), DoH, VicPol, Local Government, Commonwealth agencies (e.g. Depts Social Services & Human Services) - other agencies may be co- opted onto discrete working groups 7 Possible structure under consideration Critical success factors

8 Providing coordinated supports and services for people with disability Development of social services in growth corridors Establishing coordinated responses to support refugee settlement Preparing early intervention strategies to address youth offending Establishing collaborative approaches to supporting at risk children and vulnerable young people Addressing high rates of unapproved absenteeism and youth disengagement Examples of projects that the area-based social services governing bodies might oversee at the local level include: Addressing specific, complex challenges, e.g. teen parents, family violence The purpose would be to drive the achievement of national, state-wide and local-level transformative initiatives though joint planning and priority setting at the area level; conduct of special projects; information sharing; improving service coordination; and performing program governance functions where there is multi-agency involvement Note that the focus of the area-based governing bodies would be on coordinated planning and collaboration, rather than the direct management of service delivery (i.e. establishment of collaborative case management mechanisms). 8 Purpose of reform and examples of projects/initiatives

9 Some of the details of the model still to be worked through include: Membership, including what role there may be for community sector organisations and how representation could work across 17 regions Scope (initially targeting vulnerable children and at-risk young people, moving to life-course focus over time) Integration with other structures/networks (at a range of levels and across tiers of government) Decision-making authority (full decision-making powers, or networking/coordination function only) Performance reporting and accountability (linked to scope and membership) Opportunities for innovative funding models in future (e.g. pooled funding) Stakeholder engagement (NFP sector, Commonwealth, local government, schools, etc) 9

10 Next steps: Vulnerable Children Reform Unit: Jointly funded unit, located in DHS, to coordinate, monitor and report on the Victorian Vulnerable Children Strategy. Executive Director is being recruited at the moment. DEECD, Justice and Health are recruiting staff for the unit at the moment. DHS and DPC have provided staff to the unit. RFQ on next stage: Will work on the next phase of the development of the model Victorian Children and Youth Implementation Group Membership State Government, MAV, VCOSS Oversee implementation of the Vulnerable Children’s Strategy through the VCRU including Area Based Governance The next phase of the work will focus on further refining these details … target is for implementation by first half of

11 Challenges to Consider: Existing Structures What other governance structures focus on vulnerability, children and young people? Would they duplicate or be complimentary? Membership What would representation in a local area look like? If the area based governance groups pick up central functions of evaluation, procurement, funding how is conflict of interest of service providers managed? 11


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