Exceptional Project Within a Not for Profit Organisation
The ZEST Award for Exceptional Project Within a Not for Profit Organisation recognises projects by not for profit organisations that achieve a positive impact that go above and beyond their anticipated outcomes in Greater Western Sydney.
Below are our nominees for the 2017 ZEST Award for Exceptional Project Within a Not for Profit Organisation:
The Staples Bag – Winner
The Staples Bag social enterprise is an initiative of Settlement Services International (SSI) that improves access to nutritious and affordable food and helps address the growing issue of people living below the poverty line. The Staples Bag sells pantry items at discounted prices which can be bought as pre-packaged hampers or individually.
While the warehouse and retail store operate in Campsie and it also runs over 15 weekly pop-ups in Social Housing estates and retirement villages. Pop-ups are held in Parramatta and Cranebrook, and will soon be in Blacktown. The Staples Bag provides over 750 bags of groceries every week.
Blue Mountains Trek for Timor – Highly Commended
Blue Mountains Trek for Timor organising group has just completed their forth biannual Trek fundraising event. The group has raised a total of $260,000 over four treks. 100% of funds raised went directly to projects in Timor; most funds assisted the community of the remote area of Hatobuilico with whom Blue Mountains has had a ‘Friendship Relationship’ since 2004.The Trek for Timor is made up of local volunteers who have come together out of a common appreciation of the value of walking and of helping our good neighbour just across the sea. Blue Mountains Trek for Timor is auspiced by Mountains Community Resource Network.
Immediate Placement Program – Highly Commended
Immediate Placement Program is a pilot project supporting children, young people and families who are entering out of home care for the first time. The Immediate Care Program is based on a Para Professional Foster Carer (PPFC) model that provides children and young people with an immediate placement care environment and opportunities that focus on safety, stability and nurturing.
The Program provides crisis support services to address trauma related issues and maintain children’s positive social and emotional wellbeing. In addition it adopts a therapeutic approach in engaging parents to address childrearing practices and understand their responsibilities as parents while participating in therapeutic activities that will engage children and develop routines to maintain stability in the family home.
Centralised Trip Allocation and Booking System – CTABS
Although not the first community transport organisation to make the transition to CTABS, SWCT is recognised as the leader in making the system work – challenging its functionality, assessing user-friendliness and ensuring that issues were quickly addressed and overcome. South West Community Transport (SWCT) has implemented the new Centralised Trip Allocation and Booking System (CTABS) to improve organisational efficiency and better customer experience for clients.
A major training program also formed large part of the implementation effort, focusing on use of new mobile communications technology for drivers, new procedures for bookings and allocation staff and an awareness program for clients.
Connect to Work
The ‘Connect to Work’ project delivers one-on-one free employment advice to local job seekers and assists recently arrived migrants and refugees to overcome barriers to seeking and gaining employment.
The project assists local residents with job searches and job application skills such as resume preparation, covering letter and selection criteria writing as well as interview practice. Moreover, it presents workshops on work rights, interview skills, and Australian work culture.
Delivered in 7 languages by a dedicated and hardworking team, ‘Connect to Work’ assists on average 10 job seekers per month in Auburn and Berala.
DAIR (Drug and Alcohol, Information and Resilience Skills)
DAIR (Drug and Alcohol, Information and Resilience Skills) is a Youth Solutions drug and alcohol prevention and early intervention project, targeting 14 – 16 year olds delivered within secondary schools, schools for special purposes and other learning environments in Macarthur and Wingecarribee.
DAIR aims to reduce harm among young people by increasing their knowledge and resilience. DAIR comprises 4-6 workshops, delivered weekly. Teachers, parents and other community stakeholders are also engaged in the project to provide ongoing support to young people after the project’s completion.
Over four years, nearly 1000 young people, across 47 different schools and community groups, have participated in DAIR. The positive impact of the project has exceeded expectations and its anticipated outcomes.
Emergency Housing Assistance (EHA)
Emergency Housing Assistance (EHA) is an exceptional initiative established by Settlement Services International (SSI) to address the increasing demand for crisis accommodation in Greater Western Sydney. EHA is self-funded and has been established to assist vulnerable members of the community who are at risk of homelessness.
SSI EHA provides furnished short term, temporary, transitional and crisis accommodation to eligible clients. SSI is a community-based, not-for-profit humanitarian organisation providing a range of services in the areas of humanitarian settlement, housing, asylum seeker assistance, multicultural foster care, disability support, employment services and youth support in NSW.
MAGIC (Macarthur Access Group For Inclusive Communities)
MAGIC (Macarthur Access Group For Inclusive Communities) commenced in late 2013 as a response to consultations with families of people with disability who identified the challenges accessing services, businesses and the broader community.
The work of MAGIC is underpinned by the right of all people to access and be included in a community that respects and accepts difference. The MAGIC project encourages businesses across Macarthur to apply to become a place of MAGIC, and through doing so commit to the MAGIC Charter emphasising inclusiveness, diversity, safety and customer service.
Multicultural Seniors Art Therapy Program
An innovative Multicultural Seniors Art Therapy Program in Western Sydney demonstrated the extraordinary healing power of art to create social connections, enhance wellbeing and increase health benefits for its seniors. Organised by SydWest Multicultural Services and funded by NSW FaCS, the program brought together seniors and people with disabilities to explore art and reduce social isolation.
The 12-week program facilitated by qualified Art Therapists and supported by volunteers and interpreters, engaged 40 seniors from diverse backgrounds often with little or no English and suffering a range of health issues across the Blacktown, Cumberland and Parramatta LGAs.
Parents Cafe Fairfield
The parents Café-Fairfield Inc. is a not for profit organisation based at Fairfield High School providing settlement services for parents and young people as well as pathways for education and employment.
The aim of the organisation is to assist parents and the broader Fairfield High School community who are interested in supporting students and partner primary schools to promote health and wellbeing. It also aims to support the community, many of whom are of a refugee background, in working towards becoming more informed and confident Australian citizens.
Productivity Bootcamp is an 8-week course that gets young people work ready by focusing on equipping them with the foundational skills such as formwork, steel, concrete and general ground works required to successfully enter the infrastructure industry.
Although this program is based around infrastructure, the style of training concentrates much more safety, injury prevention, attitude, work ethic, communication skills, dealing with different personalities, punctuality and nutrition – all of which affect labour productivity irrespective of the industry.
Questions Answered through Language for Migrants (QALM)
QALM is an English conversation course providing language support aimed at increasing the ability of participants to communicate effectively in an Australian context.
QALM, meaning pen in Arabic, stands for ‘Questions Answered through Language for Migrants’. The program is run in a relaxed classroom environment to foster confidence and maximise opportunities to speak English. The course assists newly arrived refugees and migrants learn day-to-day English in Australia. The program and employs TESOL methods, with curriculum and facilitators provided by the Australasian Training Academy (ATA).
Sydney Muslim Conference (SMC)
The Sydney Muslim Conference (SMC) is an annual large-scale event focused on developing a language for Australian Muslims to address the challenges they face. SMC celebrates the ethnic diversity of our communities facilitating a space to enhance and promote social cohesion.
This one-day event brings together a wide range of speakers on a variety of topics, addressing the needs of an increasingly multicultural Muslim Community. The primary aim of the conference is to bring young Australian Muslims from diverse cultural backgrounds together to highlight how Islam plays a positive role in a harmonious society.
The Multicultural Support Workers Project
The Multicultural Support Workers Project aims to Build positive relationships between FaCS, non-Government organisations and CALD communities within NSW. It promotes culturally competent family interventions by better equipping, through cross cultural practice, FaCS caseworks and non-government organisations with cultural information and language support when working with CALD families in NSW.
The Multicultural Support Workers Project participates in home visits, case planning, Cultural Care Plans, case conferences, teleconferences, case consultations and referrals. It also provides tailored information sessions about Child Protection system, family and community services and Australian law using an in-depth community development approach.
Young people are active translators through which families consume and comprehend information. When educating families about healthy living and life skills, focusing on the education of young people, is vital.
Universal Cooks is a five-week educational program, based in high schools to educate young newly arrived students from Fairfield Intensive English Centre in life skills such as grocery budgeting, healthy and nutritional eating, food labelling and cultural awareness. All within a hospitality setting.
Universal Cooks utilises the skills of a chef and support worker to both educate and participate in the activities culminating in a cooking class integrating all of the knowledge and experience gained through the program.
Yell and Tell
Since 2008 the Queen of Hearts Community Foundation has witnessed a 1000% increase in child grooming cases. This sudden increase in incidents has sparked the need for a program to raise awareness of child grooming and preventative measures.
Early in 2016 the Queen of Hearts Community Foundation in partnership with students from Western Sydney University created, designed and implemented the Yell & Tell Show – the first online cyber safety program specifically designed to teach the dangers lurking online to children under 10 years of age.
The information on this website was supplied by the Award Nominators.
The ZEST team takes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information provided.
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