Craig has worked in the Early Childhood and Social Services sector for over ten years. In previous roles he has supported the development of program implementation and evaluation measurement tools and frameworks for early childhood development, parenting support and building community capacity.
The Western Integrated Intensive Family Support System is a disciplined approach to integrated service provision across a region that covers three council areas with a population up to 280,000.What separates this collaboration from others is its deliberative strategy to embed a ‘Systems-thinking’ approach to improving the integration and coordination of services from across a number of sectors. The initiative grew having identified that an increasing number of children and families were presenting with low to medium risk factors were not able to receive services due to increasing demand. By enhancing cross/level sector connections and meeting regularly we have begun to see a shift including case coordination, and improved sharing of information since its start in September 2016.
The primary audience is individual staff who work with or manage services for children and families. A shared measurement system helps staff to identify appropriate referral pathways to ensure children and families receive timely support- this system looks at the capacity of the various services. Tracking waiting lists, number of active clients, capacity of services and number of services across the system. Individuals from government and non-government organisations representing multiple sectors including Homelessness, Low Income Support, and Ante/post-natal support (among others) meet regularly to address ongoing system challenges.
P. G. Foster-Fishman, et al. ‘Putting the system back into systems change: a framework for understanding and changing organizational and community systems’, Community Psychol, 2007.
J. Neal, Z. Neal, ‘Nested or networked? Future directions for ecological systems theory’, Social Development, Vol 22 No. 4.