Our work in Community

Central Queensland is diverse and covers a large area, ECCQ is beginning with a focus on some smaller scale initiatives and will seek to expand as the movement toward social innovation and Collective Impact action groups grows.
To achieve our goal of ‘every child in CQ having every opportunity to reach their full potential’ ECCQ recognises the broad scope of change that is required. After all – if we continue to do what we have always done as a way of addressing the ‘wicked’ social issues in the community, then we are always going to get the same result.

Influencing change at both systemic and population levels takes time and requires more than just conversations.

WHAT WE ARE LEARNING ABOUT OUR COMMUNITIES

Diversity and difference in local communities have been clear, with some communities experiencing strong levels of cohesiveness regarding the wicked social issues they face and others being far from ready to come together as a collective, sharing a common purpose.

Some communities have an abundance of resources to support their journey, but these resources are often:

  • Fragmented
  • Duplicated
  • And lack citizen input in design and delivery

Key to building success at a community level is:

  • Citizen involvement, not just those who normally step up but those who are less likely to be heard
  • Federal, State and Local government participation
  • Local councils working as part of collectives to support social change for our children
  • Existing services to come together with ECCQ and community

Some communities already have a strong community ‘collective’ way of working and do not need interference from us, but we are there to support if they feel it would benefit their aims and focus.

ZILZIE – A NICHE COASTAL COMMUNITY

Every Child CQ is doing some preliminary work with the Livingstone Shire Council, the Local level Alliance facilitator and with the Zilzie community. As part of this initial scoping re community interest, a recent mini-survey indicated that of the residents surveyed.

74% of respondents indicated they would like to be a part of a ‘Zilzie’ Action Group

93.5% of community respondents said they would like to participate in further surveys

This positive response has encouraged our small collective to continue our exploring –

  • From the survey, we have identified gaps in the voices we have heard, and we are moving to address these gaps and building a more complete story of the opportunities and issues for Zilzie, from a resident’s perspective.
  • With such a strong indication of interest in joining an action group for Zilzie, we are planning our first follow-up meeting to hear more about what Zilzie residents want to be a part of.
  • We are compiling some informative data around Zilzie to better inform our thinking and to help us understand Zilzie.

If you are a Zilzie resident we would love you to complete the survey.

COMMUNTY ENGAGEMENT ADVISORY GROUP

Kicked off in February 2018, this group is made up of citizens from the community is a key part of ECCQ’s Engagement Plan – Empowering Community to Empower Community.
In the first two meetings, the group has contributed positively to:

  • Defining ‘community’ when considering engagement
  • Key values and actions in the engagement.
  • Exploring ideas to shift hard to engage communities.

Meeting reports:
1 February 2018
3 May 2018

BUILDING COMMUNITY CAPACITY AND EMPOWERMENT TO BE LEADERS OF CHANGE

No one person, organisation or government initiative can address the ‘wicked’ issues some communities are facing in Central Queensland
It is important we do not throw out all the valuable work that is happening now, as without it there would be nothing, ECCQ is aware of their responsibility to shift the dial on what communities are doing and how they are doing it. This involves focusing on:

  • Empowering communities;
  • Capacity building and;
  • Creating a strong base of social capital to enable the emergence of community owned and led action groups.

Our first step is to enhance the capacity of a smaller number of individuals or groups to make choices and to transform those choices into desired actions and outcomes and to encourage them to take these strengths back into their communities and influence the greater empowerment of all.

Community Engagement Toolkit

Community engagement is about ensuring that those most impacted by social challenges have a say in designing and implementing solutions.

The participation of intended beneficiaries and their families, neighbours and trusted leaders can be an integral part of data-driven processes to achieve better results.

A shift in power where community members own their and help produce the result will lead to greater impact.

Community Engagement Toolkit

WORKING ON SYSTEMS CHANGE

We live in a society based on systems and when there are opportunities or issues ECCQ wants to understand more about these things, so we can promote more of what works and attempt to interrupt the cycles that are maintaining and feeding the things that are not working so well.

Communities are complex systems – and not one size first all – we need to ensure when working with local communities and other stakeholders that we take time to

  • Understand the issues from several different viewpoints;
  • Challenge the existing perceptions, biases and beliefs that continue to feed into the status quo;
  • Encourage individuals to enter a space where they are aware of their own beliefs and values that influence their perceptions and that they can respectfully accept the beliefs and values of others.

OUR WORK WITH FEDERAL, STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNEMNT

Every Child CQ meets regularly with government representatives to encourage their increased understanding in what it takes to be successful in this new way of working, their commitment to supporting and being interested and involved in local initiatives and to create ongoing opportunities where they can influence and enable change…

This is more than just talk and ECCQ is working to influence government actions that will empower community at all levels and make a difference to CQ children’s lives – without policy, funding and contract change the traditional foundations will stall communities’ abilities.

We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of this country and recognise their connection to land, wind, water and community. We pay our respect to them, their cultures, and to the Elders both past and present.