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Invercargill maps social priorities

Ruth Dyson

31 January, 2008
Invercargill maps social priorities

A community report that maps social services in Invercargill District was launched today by Social Development and Employment Minister Ruth Dyson.

The report is the result of extensive community collaboration and identifies key social priorities for the district, which includes Invercargill City and Bluff.

The report is part of Local Services Mapping (LSM), a community-based process facilitated by the Ministry of Social Development. LSM is intended to help communities improve the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery to families. Local government is a key partner in the process.

“The purpose of Local Services Mapping is to build on existing community strengths to improve outcomes for families,” said Ruth Dyson.

“By mapping local services, LSM helps identify and measure what is important to communities through a process of consultation, planning and reporting.”

Information for the report was gathered from a range of sources, including surveys, focus groups and tapping into local service provider networks.

Social priorities identified in the Invercargill LSM report include:

* Identifying ways to relieve stress on caregivers
* Providing supported and emergency accommodation for youth aged 15-18, for people with mild to moderate mental health issues, and for single women in crisis
* Providing academic educational opportunities for teen parents
* Ensuring access to appropriate residential drug and alcohol services
* Developing a shared web-based information service for the region

The information in this report provides the foundation for the community response planning phase of the LSM process. This phase is already underway, and involves the community, non-government organisations and central and local governments working together to address the identified priorities.

LSM has become an important planning tool for district councils to achieve the wellbeing component of community outcomes identified in their Long-Term Council Community Plans. To date, approximately 37 territorial authorities throughout New Zealand are using LSM to identify ways to improve outcomes for families.


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