5. Support

Get to know your local support services

Community hubs serve as gateways for families to access existing services. Our programs aim to fill in the gaps rather than duplicate what’s already out there.

Hubs are also an important way of linking government agencies and community services with vulnerable families who may otherwise be difficult to reach. In return, service providers can help by introducing new families to the hubs. It’s therefore important to quickly get to know ‘who’s who’ among the government and community support agencies servicing your local community.

Your support coordinator will provide a list of initial contacts and link you into key networks. Then it’s up to you to attend network meetings, build relationships and dig deeper to extend your knowledge about which quality, reliable services may be able to assist you and your hub families when the need arises. (See Priority 8: Build and sustain partnerships, to find out how to use this knowledge to even further benefit.)

What works – insights from hub leaders

  • Ask your hub support coordinator to introduce you to a service that is important for your hub, or to invite them to one of your local area hub leader meetings.
  • Find out which service network meetings are most valuable and if your support coordinator isn’t attending this network, register to receive meeting minutes by email so you keep up to date with what’s happening locally even if you can’t get to every network meeting.

If you have placement students, ask them to visit local services and help to develop a resource folio about the services and support in your area. At the same time, they can hand out the hub timetables to the service providers. If you’re unsure how to get started, ask your support coordinator for guidance.

Aim to build strong relationships with the case workers from your local settlement services agency, particularly those working in Humanitarian Settlement Support and the Settlement Grants Program.
The caseworkers know their clients well and can personally introduce them to you and the hub. If you’re not sure where to start, ask for guidance from your hub support coordinator and the other hub leaders in your local area network.

Speak to your support coordinator about how your hub can develop its connections with the local council, particularly the children and family services, community development and social cohesion teams. Other sections of the council to connect with include the community education, allied health, grants, and sport and recreation teams.