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Pacific Cultural Social Service Consortiums Launch

Hon Steve Maharey Speech Notes

Address to mark the launch of the Pacific Cultural Social Service Consortiums. Manhattan Function Centre, Mt Roskill, Auckland

Introduction

Talofa lava, Malo e lelei, Mauri, Taloha ni, Ni sa bula vinaka, Fakalofa lahi atu, Kia Orana, and warm Pacific Greetings.

It is a pleasure for Mark and I to join you here today.

I want to acknowledge from the start the depth and breadth of work undertaken by Pacific people for Pacific people in communities across New Zealand.

Today we are focusing particularly on the establishment of two consortiums of Pacific social service organisations in Auckland. Those consortiums are made up of organisations that provide services to support families and their children.

I am aware that Pacific social service providers deliver a range of services, from statutory services, such as the provision of care for children, to community based preventative services designed to address 'issues' well before they become 'problems'.

The Consortiums we are launching here today will provide a range of functions and help to assist those organisations to deliver their core services. The consortiums will provide information and support and advice to their members. They will organise and coordinate training programmes, and advocate on social service issues for Pacific communities, Pacific social service providers and their clients. They will coordinate input into the range of functions for their member Pacific social service organisations.

The development of the Consortiums has been a long process. There was a substantial round of consultation with the Pacific community in 1998 which began the development of three consortiums, two in Auckland and one in Porirua/Hutt Valley. At that stage the Consortiums were focused on becoming Pacific Cultural Social Services as defined under Section 396 in the Children, Youth Persons and Their Families Act 1989. However by the start of this year the Pacific Cultural services still remained paper based organisations.

In August last year the Government asked the Department of Child, Youth and Family Services to progress matters. The Department held a workshop facilitated by the Pacific People¡¦s Consulting Group. The result was a plan to progress issues for these groups.

The workshop set out principles of operation including by Pacific for Pacific, services of excellence and provider accountability to Pacific communities and suggested approaches that included outcome focused contracting, staged provider development and workforce development.

In consultation with the three consortiums it has consequently been decided to adopt a staged development approach. While the statutory care and custody services function remain a longer term development goal for some Pacific providers and for the Consortiums, it has been agreed that the development path for the consortiums will start with section 403 approval for the delivery of services to assist existing social service providers and organisations wishing to develop systems for approval to become social services funded by Child, Youth and Family.

Mark and I know that Pacific social providers just want to get on with the job of making a difference in their community.

And we know that you are committed to providing services of the highest quality.

The Consortiums we are launching today are about providing services that will assist Pacific social services to further develop what they know best ¡V making a positive difference in their community.

Budget 2000 allocated $500,000 this year for the establishment of the Pacific Provider Development Fund to improve outcomes for Pacific children, young people and their families.

Next year, and in years after that, the fund climbs to $870,000 a year.

I launched the Pacific Provider Development Fund in February this year, and the funding is being used to assist existing Pacific providers to develop their governance, management, information technology and service delivery infrastructure and contract practice, coaching, supervision and quality assurance services from Pacific trainers.

The fund is also being used to establish the three Consortiums so that they can actively assist Pacific service providers to enhance the quality of their services.

Services to be delivered

The Pacific Cultural Social Service Consortiums aims to deliver the following core services to its members:

„h Information Provision, support and advice
„h Training programmes
„h Advocacy on issues relating to Pacific social service providers and their clients and customers
„h Co-ordination in the provision of Pacific social services

Information Provision, support and advice

In the provision of information, support and advice, the Consortium aims to make available:

„h Information on how to build and develop your organisation to provide effective and quality social services to Pacific peoples;

„h Resource material, such as relevant research, on Pacific peoples and social service issues;

„h Information on potential funding sources;

„h Assistance and advice on approval and monitoring processes; and

„h Channelling of information to the Dept of Child, Youth and Family on issues for Pacific people and providers to help inform policy development.

„h Promotion campaigns to heighten public awareness of needs, issues for Pacific peoples and to promote positive actions and ideas.

Training

In the provision of Training Services, the Consortiums will be contracted to provide training on key issues for members which will strengthen their organisations. Types of training will include:

„h Human Resource and Financial Management
„h Business systems
„h Organisational Development
„h Counselling
„h Policy development
„h Team building
„h Governance

The Consortiums will be able to offer opportunities for members to participate in training provided by others, such as Govt agencies, training providers etc
For Pacific by Pacific training modules will disseminate Pacific values, practises and cultural mores. Member organisations will be able to gain one to one training.

Advocacy

The Consortiums will be contracted to provide advocacy services. They will provide a vehicle for advocacy to government agencies in relation to the issues and needs of Pacific communities, peoples and groups. In so doing they will be able to promote the unique way in which Pacific providers meet the needs of Pacific clients and promote Pacific models for the provision of social services.

I am sure that one of the key roles that they will take on is to advocate for appropriate funding and resource allocation to support members
Act as a mouthpiece for consortium members

Coordination

As each consortium is made up of both pan Pacific and ethnic specific Pacific social service providers it will be contracted to play a key role in coordinating a united voice on Pacific Social Service issues, needs and solutions and promoting understanding and respect for each of the member groups and their respective cultural beliefs and norms.

The consortiums will also be able to coordinate translation and interpretation services and contact people for members who have clients with specific Pacific languages barriers.

Conclusion

Finally, I am personally committed to the concept of Pacific Cultural Social Services being able to provide high quality services to Pacific children under the CYP&F Act.

My hope is that today we are launching a Consortium of providers that will through collaboration help build the capacity of Pacific providers, but may allow Pacific Cultural Social Services to become a reality.

Thank you for joining us today to mark the launch of the two Auckland Pacific Cultural Social Service Consortiums.

Ends

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