Statewide Training Project
WA Community Service Organisations have a unique opportunity to build their capacity to ‘bounce back’ in the event of a natural disaster with a new training project being rolled out by WACOSS.
In 2013, research conducted by the Australian Council of Social Service Inc. and Climate Risk Pty Ltd found that community organisations are critically under-prepared for extreme events, despite playing an important role in supporting people experiencing hardship to recover from them. The consequences for those reliant on community organisations were serious, including increased risk of homelessness, illness and even death.
As a result, ACOSS developed the Resilient Community Organisations Toolkit.
Now WACOSS has developed a training workshop to assist community organisations to use the Toolkit and develop their resilience. To find out more about the Six Steps to Resilience and the workshops, view the following short video.
The ACOSS Resilient Community Organisations Toolkit
The Toolkit includes two key elements: a Benchmarking Tool to assess current preparedness and identify areas in need of improvement; and the ‘6 Steps to Disaster Resilience’, a tool with practical information and resources to support disaster preparedness activities at the individual, organisational and community level.
In 2017, WACOSS won a Natural Disaster Resilience Program Grant to deliver training to 17 locations across WA in the use of the Toolkit so that WA community organisations, both large and small, can measure and improve their resilience to disasters and emergencies.
The round of one-day training workshops began in Broome on 4 September 2017 and continues through to the end of June 2018.
The training is being designed and delivered by WACOSS Manager Projects and Business Development, Stuart Reid. For more information, or to schedule a workshop in your region, please contact Stuart at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 08 9420 7222.
Because the project is supported by a Natural Disasters Resilience Program Grant, there will be minimal cost to participants. WACOSS charging $25 per participant to offset local costs, but it is free for small and volunteer-run organisations.
There will be a total of 17 workshops around the State, and at this stage, workshops have been run in Broome, Harvey, Albany, Kalgoorlie, Geraldton, Esperance, Bunbury, Northam, Karratha, Newman, South Hedland, Kununurra and Perth Metro areas.
The next scheduled trainings are being held in Perth on 22 June, and in Busselton on 28 June.
Participant numbers can be flexible, but the optimal number is around 22 per workshop. Bigger numbers can be accommodated if demand is there.
Any assistance you can provide to Stuart in arranging local workshops and in getting the message out to your networks in the community sector would be greatly appreciated.
Why should you do the training?
Did you know? 25% of Community Organisations think they would close for good after an extreme weather event?
The recent Diversity in Disaster Conference in Melbourne forcefully brought home the message: Our clients are some of the people most at risk in times of natural disaster.
What can we do to ensure they survive a catastrophic event and get the support they need afterwards?
These are the questions we address in the Community Services Disaster Planning Workshop. We help you benchmark your organisation’s current level of preparedness and work through ‘Six Steps to Resilience’.
It’s a workshop that raises many questions you may not have considered, and provides you with practical tools to address the issues of business continuity and disaster resilience – both for your organisation and for your clients.
The workshop in Perth on 22 June 2018 will be the final workshop in the series funded by the Natural Disaster Resilience Program. WACOSS workshop facilitator Stuart Reid has run 15 of these workshops around the State to date, so he has picked up many tips from agencies exposed to all kinds of hazards, from storms and floods to bushfires and even earthquakes.
Stuart also attended the Diversity in Disaster Conference, so he has the latest research and agency experience available to share as well. His first-hand experience of disasters as a veteran of Darwin’s Cyclone Tracy adds an extra dimension and some unique insights.