Inaugural Meeting 4 – 5 April 2011, Alice Springs.
The inaugural 2011 CDEP Consultative Group (CCG) meeting occurred in Alice Springs on 4-5 April 2011.
In 2011 the format of CCG membership changed. Membership no longer includes professional experts as sitting members. Specialist expertise will be available on an as-needs basis. Provider members also increased from nine to twelve and six provider members were retained from the 2009/10 Group.
The CCG provides advice on operational improvements to the program, with a particular focus on the delivery of effective and innovative Work Readiness and Community Development Projects.
It also provides an important forum for sharing information about successful approaches to service delivery in remote Indigenous communities.
The meeting focused on:
1.1: Noting the Minister’s commitment to ongoing discussions on the future of remote servicing arrangements, CCG members discussed the issues that should be covered in any consultations on the future of remote servicing arrangements. The CCG suggest ongoing communication should include the following matters:
1) Type and scope of the provider model/s/modalities
What should the provider model look like in remote areas?
2) Who gets what kind of service?
What is the best service model to attain maximum social, employment and training outcomes?
How, by who, involving what? How do we make compliance work?
4) How to increase participation?
5) Long term strategy
Business development, entrepreneur, innovation, new ideas, how do they become sustainable?
6) How can the Department effectively procure services?
7) Ongoing monitoring
8) Payment of wages
9) Branding of CDEP
Action 1.1.1: CCG recommends the Department takes note of this advice.
Action 1.1.2: CCG members will provide the Department with further feedback about the consultation process by 21 April 2011.
1.2: The CCG reported inconsistencies in advice provided from the Department to CDEP Providers. In particular, it was noted that different FaHCSIA offices occasionally provided different responses to similar issues. The Department acknowledged there was always room for improvement, but also noted that sometimes advice will vary because of the different circumstances in which providers operate across the nation.
Concerns were also raised about the way in which CDEPManager interacted with DEEWR systems, which occasionally resulted in new clients being automatically rejected before they had commenced with the CDEP provider.
Action 1.2.1: Department to report next meeting on processes developed to ensure advice to CDEP providers is accurate and consistent across all regions.
Action 1.2.2: FaHCSIA is to discuss with DEEWR the possibility to undertake a process map, tracking referred participants who do not present to CDEP providers.
Action 1.2.3: By 30 April, CCG members will provide Allyson Essex with example cases of automatic rejections to inform this process mapping and the tracking of possible system bugs.
1.3: The CCG was presented with draft documents about the transition from wages for distribution to clients.
Action 1.3: CCG members will provide feedback about the documents by 21 April 2011.
1.4: Methods to support communication between CDEP providers and the CCG were discussed. CDEPManager was seen as a useful way to facilitate two-way communication between the CCG and CDEP Providers.
Action 1.4.1: Department to develop a proposal for using CDEPManager to facilitate CCG communication to CDEP providers.
Action 1.4.2: Department to set up CCG Mailbox so that CDEP providers can make direct contact with CCG members. Advice about the mailbox will appear on the home page of CDEP Manager.
2: CDEPManager User Group Membership
2.1: The CCG discussed communication channels the Department can use to effectively disseminate information to CDEP providers.
Action 2.1: The CCG encourages CDEP providers to join in and contribute to the CDEPManager User Group.
Action 2.2: The Department will email all service providers with details of the CDEPManager User Group.
Action 2.3: CCG members are to email Belinda Clark if they would like to join the CDEPManager User Group.
3: National CDEP and Outcome Data
CCG requested the Department develop a process to report to CDEP providers on national outcome data.
Action 3.1: The Department will examine the feasibility of providing national data trends to CDEP providers on a regular basis. The Department will develop a proposed report for consideration at the next meeting of the CCG.
4: Engaging youth
The CCG discussed the need to better engage with youth. Improved engagement of youth was considered important for CDEP given demographic trends in remote communities. It was considered this is a suitable topic for the establishment of a portfolio group (see below).
In the experience of CCG members, young people in remote communities have significant drug and alcohol issues, early disengagement from education, low functional literacy and numeracy, peer pressure, cultural issues, homelessness and overcrowding, and other distractions. Innovative or appropriate engagement strategies are needed to assist youth to engage with activities that progress them to be work ready. Many youth need intensive assistance before they can benefit from vocational training or job placement services.
Action 4.1: The CCG request a draft report to be presented at the next CCG meeting outlining better practice and initiatives to engage youth.
5: CCG Portfolio Groups
The CCG will form portfolio groups to investigate and report on specific topics. Work will take place out-of-sessions so reports can be tabled for discussion at CCG meetings. CCG members will move in and out of the groups depending on their interest, workload and expertise. The Better Practice and Provider Support section will assist facilitation.
Three portfolio groups were identified:
- Youth engagement,
- Indigenous economic development and remote service delivery: developing economies/micro enterprise/ opportunity creation, and;
- Developing better practice and innovation: women, training, good practice case studies, expanding life skills etc.
Action 5.1: CCG members are to email Belinda Clark and identify areas of interest and which members are to take lead roles.
Action 5.2: The Better Practice and Provider Support section will facilitate teleconferences with members to assist portfolio group progression.
Action 5.3: The Better Practice and Provider Support section to email members of a sample case study.