Inclusive Service Support Project (ISSP)
A pilot project developed by FWT+DP and funded by Families NSW to assist in providing support to mainstream early childhood, family and community services to identify and implement strategies for better inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, families and community in program delivery. The overall aim of the project is to increase the skills, knowledge, and commitment of participating mainstream services to engage with, and improve access for, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities living in the Metro West region.
The project began in 2011 and has been working with individual mainstream organisations to provide one on one support and a more flexible delivery of in‐service training, mentoring and capacity building initiatives with the management, staff and volunteers.
Outcomes for participating services are:
- Increased understanding of the experience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families using mainstream services
- Development and maintenance of genuine, respectful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workers and services
- Recognition and valuing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural expertise
- Identifying and implementing different approaches for better inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, families and community in program delivery
- Identifying and implementing specific strategies for joint initiatives that support inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, families and children
The project has also delivered focused learning and development opportunities (for specific needs or service types identified) to help assist in building capacity to work more effectively and inclusively with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, families and communities. So far the project has delivered the ‘Ngroo Education Workshop’ for early childhood service providers and an ‘Aboriginal Cultural Appreciation for CALD workers’ workshop for CALD workers born overseas. These workshops were developed to specifically address the needs of each of these groups and to provide participants with an opportunity to gain a better understanding of Australian colonial history, the impacts of past and present policies on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today, the importance of promoting cross-cultural understanding to the wider community, and the opportunity to explore practical strategies around engaging local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders and community.
The development of a practical resource for organisations embarking on this work to capture key messages of the project is currently in progress and will be made available on the FWT+DP website on completion.
“Sharing our Stories” Resource
The ‘Sharing our Stories’ resource was developed for professionals and organisations to assist them to begin, or continue along their journey towards improving access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals, families and communities.
The ‘Sharing Our Stories’ DVD is intended to be viewed individually or in a team setting to promote reflection and lead discussions that are focused on the various stages and elements that are key to this journey. A reflection worksheet has been developed to assist you to get the most out of the resource.