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.
Our governance arrangements 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.
The Community Leadership Group comprises members of EECQ Inc. and is the strategic direction setting and oversight body. The members elect the office bearers (President, Secretary and Treasurer) who make up the Management Committee. This committee undertakes operational oversight of human resource and financial management and necessary administrative functions. The Director Operations reports directly to the President of the Management Committee.
The Community Leadership Group Chair convenes CLG meetings on a quarterly basis to receive progress reports from the Management Committee and Director Operations, to consider emerging issues and strategise around them, check alignment of purpose and set future direction adjustments as required. The CLG is designed to include all members of ECCQ Inc. in the setting, review and maintenance of the overall strategy and vision of the ECCQ initiative. One of the quarterly meetings will form the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of ECCQ Inc. to ensure probity and compliance with association rules.
The Management Committee will meet regularly to lead and manage the operational governance requirements of the ECCQ as an incorporated body. The office bearers will be elected on a yearly basis by members as part of the AGM. The Management Committee is the key decision maker for all matters relating to the operations of ECCQ Inc. and the implementation of the strategic direction, as set by the CLG. The Management Committee delegates key operational, financial and administrative decision making responsibility to the Director Operations to ensure day to day operations are effective. Regular operational reporting by the Director Operations is directly to the Management Committee.
Elements of ECCQ Governance structure
Community Leadership Group
The Community Leadership Group (CLG) is the central governing group that leads, guides and directs the initiative. The CLG provides strategic leadership by setting long term vision, defining purpose and determining objectives. It also guides delivery by overseeing the work of the Management Committee, 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 the Leadership Alliance and promotes the initiative to grow community confidence and participation.
The CLG 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 Director Operations to the Community Leadership Group regarding progress on a quarterly basis.
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.
Team members may be directly employed, co-opted from, or out-posted by, partner agencies and could include volunteers.
Project Teams/Community Partnerships
Are typically groups of actors that are focused on specific projects or local responses, 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. Such teams are likely to be smaller in size, have less diverse membership, and be more time limited than OAG’s.
Where existing partnerships or projects 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’ community led partnerships 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 OAG structure.
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 Management Committee to ensure probity and public confidence are maintained.