Clan home vis­it­ing pro­gram axed

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - NEWS - Jessica War­riner

CLAN WA has closed its par­ents and fam­i­lies home vis­it­ing ser­vice af­ter 27 years.

The ser­vice stopped on March 24 af­ter the Kewdale-based or­gan­i­sa­tion’s ten­der ap­pli­ca­tion to the Depart­ment for Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment and Com­mu­ni­ties was re­jected.

Clan WA chief ex­ec­u­tive Mitchell Messer said the par­ent­ing ser­vices ten­ders, across each part of the metropoli­tan area and re­gions, were look­ing to stream­line ser­vices and have less in­di­vid­ual sup­port.

“We don’t know what the im­pact will be ini­tially,” Mr Messer said.

“I think it’ll be more dif­fi­cult for peo­ple who feel iso­lated and dis­con­nected from the com­mu­nity. They may find it dif­fi­cult to get to groups and work­shops and par­tic­i­pate in those ac­tiv­i­ties.

“Our ser­vices of­ten worked with these in­di­vid­u­als prior to them par­tic­i­pat­ing in com­mu­nity cour­ses. It’s about build­ing their con­fi­dence and re­silience and I think it will be more dif­fi­cult for peo­ple to get ac­cess to those ser­vices.”

Clan WA’s Man­durah of­fice was closed af­ter the fund­ing cut. Seven staff po­si­tions have been cut and the re­main­ing staff have re­duced their hours.

The home vis­it­ing pro­gram rep­re­sented about 60 per cent of Clan WA’s fund­ing.

Mr Messer said it was a pity the ser­vice was not able to con­tinue un­til at least the end of the fi­nan­cial year.

“It’s a shame there wasn’t a pe­riod of han­dover. The new ser­vices will have dif­fi­culty hit­ting the ground at 100 per cent on day one,” he said.

“I think fam­i­lies miss out for a pe­riod of time while ser­vices are set­tled, in­stead of al­low­ing those new ser­vices to ramp up while we ramp down. It’s a shame for the com­mu­nity.”

A spokesper­son for the Depart­ment of Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment and Com­mu­ni­ties said fund­ing had been pro­vided to Ngala Com­mu­nity Ser­vices, the Shire of Mun­dar­ing, Com­mu­ni­care and Meer­ilinga Young Chil­dren’s Ser­vices across the metropoli­tan area, along with Ngala’s ex­panded par­ent­ing helpline.

A Cen­tre for Par­ent­ing Ex­cel­lence has also been es­tab­lished.

“This new model is de­signed to give providers more long-term cer­tainty, with new con­tracts in place for five years,” the spokesper­son said.

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