What is Community Development?
Community Development involves ways of working which empower people to make changes in their community on issues that affect them. It means bringing people together to work on solutions that will benefit their community.
How does Community Development work at the City of Armadale?
An enthusiastic and committed Community Development team work to empower communities to meet their aspirations and respond to areas of concern. The City’s approach to community development comprises four steps:
- Ask residents what they like about their suburb, what they’d like to see and what areas are of concern to identify
- Research what projects/services work well in similar communities – known as ‘good practice’ examples
- Identify the City’s role in a potential action plan
- Explore possible projects/services with the community and local groups/organisations and invite them to be part of resulting action plans
Identifying ‘Social Priorities 2021-2023’ on which to focus Council resources
In early 2021, the Community Development team asked community members across the City’s 19 suburbs about what they love about their suburb and what their concerns are. The team also collated data sets for each suburb including Australian Bureau of Statistics 2016, the Australian Early Development Census 2018, crime statistics from the WA Police and district level data from the Department of Communities. Local services and organisations working within the community also presented their insights into what is happening for our residents.
The following four priorities have been identified for the Community Development team to focus on for 2021 to 2023:
|Armadale North and South:||Connection to Community and Services|
|Camillo:||Youth Engagement and Education|
|Kelmscott West:||Early Years and Family Support|
|All Suburbs*:||Community Safety|
*Crime hot-spots (and types of crime) identified by WA Police will be used as a key way of determining the location and type of activities to be undertaken.
See the City's Growing our Community 2021 Survey Results (downloadable below) for feedback from residents on a suburb level.
Good practice examples
What has worked well for communities with similar demographic characteristics and social issues locally, nationally and internationally? Officers have researched case studies, local experiences and key principles from a review of the academic literature available. The team has also continued speaking with local stakeholders about their experiences with what works well in particular communities including asking the question, ‘what can change the story?’.
Researching what has worked well elsewhere is a vital aspect of developing the best response for all stakeholders, including the City.
Identifying the City’s role in the response
What the City can do as an organisation can be broadly categorised as follows:
- Advocacy: To advocate to the state and federal government the need for services, resources and facilities; the City has an Advocacy Strategy for this purpose
- Coordination of services: Working with the existing networks and specific stakeholder groups including community members to generate collective action
- Contracting services: Negotiating with a service provider to deliver services/programs via a Service Agreement
- Capacity building: Assisting groups with officer advice and links with other organisations and funding sources, the Community Grants program and providing training where relevant
Registrations of Interest for Service Agreements
The City of Armadale seek Registrations of Interest from organisations to quote on providing social priority services in suburbs across the City on an annual basis. Registrations of Interest for 2021-2022 closed on 30 July 2021.
2019-2021 Social Priorities
Following community engagement in early 2019, Community Development identified the social priorities for 2019-2021:
|Armadale South:||Youth engagement and education|
|Brookdale:||Early years and family support|
|Harrisdale:||Culturally and Linguistically Diverse community connection with groups and services|
|Seville Grove:||Community safety|
 This is according to the Community Development Toolkit developed by Kylie Eastley Consultancy, in partnership with Tasmania Medicare Local and Neighbourhood Houses Tasmania.
See the City's Growing our Community 2019 Survey results (downloadable below) for feedback from residents on a suburb level.