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Investing in sustainable community services

Hon Ruth Dyson
Minister for Social Development and Employment

EMBARGOED to 3pm 12 February 2008 Media Statement

Investing in sustainable community services

The Labour-led Government is significantly boosting and guaranteeing funding for community organisations providing essential services to families, children, and young people, Social Development Minister Ruth Dyson said today.

The new funding package, announced by Prime Minister Helen Clark today, is worth $446 million over the next four years. It provides full funding for contracted essential social services delivered by community groups as well as automatic funding adjustments for volume increases and annual cost adjustment payments.

“Community organisations are sometimes better placed than core government agencies to provide practical support to families. They understand their communities and the families who live in them and they are more likely to be the first port of call for families seeking help.

“This new model will encourage groups to work together to focus on providing high-quality and relevant services for families, children and young people, rather than outputs or by individual programmes. It will also help reduce duplication of services,” said Ms Dyson.

“This investment builds on Pathway to Partnership, which was announced in Budget 2007 and is about maintaining a flexible and supportive relationship between government and non-government organisations.”
Pathway to Partnership will now be rolled out for all contracted essential social services. Essential services are those that would need to be provided by the government if a community organisation did not provide them.
“Community groups will now have more certainty. Fully funding their contracted services will give them more ability to plan ahead, attract and retain qualified staff, improve service effectiveness and achieve good outcomes for New Zealand families. Smaller services will also move from contracts to a grants-based model which will reduce their compliance costs.

The funding model will not change the vital role that volunteers perform in many community organisations, and donations will continue to be an important fundraising source to support delivery of other services.
“Our government is committed to a genuine partnership with the sector. We know that this funding and the new model of service delivery will help achieve a real difference in the lives of New Zealanders,” said Ruth Dyson.


Examples of organisations which will receive funding: Barnardos NZ. Relationship Services, Women’s Refuge, Plunket, National Network of Stopping Violence Services

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