More than 90 people representing various Sunshine Coast organisations gathered this month (18 May) at Venue 114, Bokarina, to champion how Council can continue to create a shared and inclusive region together in the future.
The forum was a direct action of council’s collaboration to deliver the objectives and outcomes of the Sunshine Coast Community Strategy 2019-2041 and led by the Community Strategy Leadership Group.
The leadership group is responsible for leading and guiding the delivery of the Strategy and supporting Action Plan and meets monthly.
Sunshine Coast Council Community Portfolio Councillor David Law said he was pleased to see so many people speak so passionately about matters impacting the whole community.
“This full-day workshop was a great opportunity to bring together and brainstorm different perspectives, needs and priorities,” Cr Law said.
“Council continues to evolve and advance our thinking around how best to engage with our community because we recognise that we are better together. As a community, every one of us holds a unique insight into, and experience on, what it means to live, work and play here – and what our future challenges and opportunities are.
“Key areas of action that emerged from this forum included council continuing to advocate to the State and Federal Governments regarding assertive outreach programs to assist those who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness.
“Another priority to emerge was a project to collect and curate diverse stories that articulate the rich history and future aspirations of our region; and an overwhelming intent to pursue an inclusive region including a strong focus on our First Nations and multicultural communities as well as our region’s young people.
“Encouragingly, each of these areas connect strongly with core objectives contained in the Community Strategy.
“These actions will provide the foundation for the Community Strategy Leadership Group, council and our community partners to focus and advance over the year and build on the community activities previously held with youth, the Reconciliation Action Plan and homelessness.”
Representatives included people from Coast2Bay Housing, Relationships Australia, USC, Nambour Community Centre, Salvation Army, Department of Housing, Department of Human Services Multicultural Advisory Group, Volunteering Sunshine Coast, Thompson Institute, United Synergies, Harmony House, Vision Australia, Multicultural Australia and USQ.
The national winners of the Planning Institute of Australia’s Awards for Planning Excellence 2020 were announced this week, with the Sunshine Coast Community Strategy receiving a national Commendation in the Public Engagement and Community Planning category, after having won the Queensland award for the same category late last year. This recognition demonstrates how the Community Strategy continues to go from strength to strength and represents the meaningful impact that ongoing collaboration and innovation between council, community organisations and government can bring.