Because every child deserves every chance to reach their full potential
ECCQ is social innovation in action and is founded on a desire to create long term sustainable change that improves wellbeing and life outcomes for children in CQ. To do this we have adopted a collective impact model that facilitates the aligned effort of a range of varied participants, stakeholders, leaders and entities. Organising these elements, engaging others to join with our aspirations and drawing upon community capacity is best done within a governance framework that provides the right balance of structure and flexibility.
The governance arrangements outlined here aim to ensure transparency, enable adaptive leadership, promote engagement and encourage innovation. Good governance enables people, guides operations and supports efficiency.
In a collective impact initiative it is also paramount that governance structures enshrine the ‘neutrality’ of the organisation but confirm an authentic connection to the service system. Bureaucratic encumbrances, funding obligations, political alliances, misaligned strategy and operational dependencies are to be dealt with effectively and governed appropriately to establish neutral credibility. This cannot however, be at the expense of developing close connections to and engagement with key partners, system stakeholders and community cohorts. Having ‘skin in the game’ ensures that confidence is maintained.
Creating the conditions necessary to change complex, complicated and entrenched social systems that impact on children’s life outcomes will require considerable innovation and probably substantial evolution of existing paradigms. To achieve this governance arrangements need to be robust enough to ensure operational coherence yet flexible enough to adjust rapidly to emerging issues, agile enough to develop and implement novel responses and open enough to take advantage or unique opportunities that unexpectedly present.
ELEMENTS OF ECCQ GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE
Community Leadership Board
The Board is the central governing group that leads, guides and directs the initiative. It provides strategic leadership by setting long term vision, defining purpose and determining objectives. It also guides delivery by overseeing the Program Manager, facilitating strategic planning, by driving operational performance, ensuring probity and confirming priorities. To ensure the viability of the initiative the Board develops and maintains external partnerships, engages investors, liaises with Core Organisation and Expert Advisory Group and promotes the initiative to grow community confidence and participation.
The Board is responsible for the progress of the initiative and is accountable for deliverables and desired outcomes.
Outcome Action Groups
These are collaborative leadership groups which aim to guide and direct work across outcome areas. Given the strategic nature of the OAG’s purview they are likely to influence sector specific actions, guide cross sectoral activity and focus attention on one or more locations simultaneously.
A Board member with responsibility for the relevant outcome will assist in the establishment of each OAG and continue as a member of that OAG to maintain a practical connection to the Board’s deliberations and decision making. OAG membership will be determined on need but will consist of sector leaders, topic experts and advocates who are willing to pursue priority outcomes by harnessing collaborative effort, encouraging innovation and creating the synergies necessary to bring about reform.
OAG’s will develop yearly plans that align to the Board Strategic Plan and report through the Program Manager to Board regarding progress on a quarterly basis.
Individuals, companies, not-for-profit entities, government agencies and communities are all eligible to be part of ECCQ as equal participants notwithstanding sponsorships, grants and philanthropic contributions. All such contributions will be transparently notified on EECQ website and real or perceived conflicts managed by the Board to ensure probity and public confidence are maintained.
Leadership Alliance Group
The LAG is a congregation of people with expert skills, knowledge and experience in fields that directly relate to the aspirations and objectives of ECCQ. It will provide expert advice, guidance and feedback to the Board regarding;
- strategic direction and planning,
- program design, implementation and evaluation
- critical issue resolution
- research and development
Members of the LAG will be invited to participate by the Board and will remain members until they choose to exit. The LAG will meet/video link with Board on a yearly basis and members will be available, on an as needs basis, for individual discussion with Board members about particular matters, to review program planning where necessary and provide input to specific project delivery components as required.
Program Coordination Team
Led by the Program Coordinator this team is the operational powerhouse of ECCQ and is dedicated to enacting the initiative’s operating strategy, supporting aligned activities, establishing shared measurement practices, facilitating action groups and project teams, phasing program work and effectively utilising resources/ funding.
This team will sit with and function from within the core organisation although the Program Coordinator will report to the Board. Team members may be directly employed, co-opted from, or out-posted by, partner agencies and could include volunteers.
The Board will continue to lead and guide the overall direction of ECCQ and provide programmatic oversight of the Program Management Team. That Team will be employed by the core organisation to manage the on-the-ground project work, with the day to day administrative support of the Core Organisation.
Core Organisation will commit the necessary logistical and staffing resources to enact the partnership, prioritise opportunities for program-related research and encourage the commitment of staff to extend the capacity of the program.
The Core Organisation will assume two of the ten Board positions, to ensure that strategic leadership and operational acumen are enhanced and the interests of the core are entrenched in the all of the Board’s deliberations.
An initial three year formal partnership agreement between Core Organisation and ECCQ is recommended to establish the foundation for long term actions. A review will be undertaken by the end of the second year, and it is envisaged further agreements will be confirmed to extend this partnership well into the future.
All sponsorship, philanthropic investment and government funding for the ECCQ initiative will be accepted and administered by the Core Organisation.
Core Organisation and ECCQ will jointly brand any marketing material, link webpages, share announcements and media activity and ensure the partnership is mutually promoted and celebrated.
Are typically groups of actors that are focused on specific projects that may be pre-existing or developed by OAG’s to progress particular tasks, problem solve or address issues impacting on identified cohorts or places. These teams are likely to be smaller in size, have less diverse membership, and be more time limited than OAG’s.
Where existing projects or activities are working toward the desired outcome area of ECCQ they can be identified as project teams and thus receive the support of OAG’s, lever off other teams and access ECCQ data resources as required. ECCQ does not wish to ‘takeover’ or control existing projects (unless an agreement to do so is gained) and does not seek to create competing projects but aims to facilitate mutually reinforcing activity via the QAG structure.