Department of Family and Community Services

NSW INVESTING TO IMPROVE SERVICES AND LIVES

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18 Jun 2013

The NSW Government continues to reform and deliver improved services and lives for

vulnerable children, young people and families, through initiatives in the NSW 2013-14 Budget.

Reforms and services funded in the Budget within the Family and Community Services portfolio

are guided by key reform goals and values:

  • breaking disadvantage rather than just managing it;
  • integrating service delivery around client needs;
  • mutual obligation, in which clients commit to and actively improve their own lives; and
  • delivering improved services through our non-government partners.

Reform and service highlights within the 2013-14 Budget include:

  • Social Benefit Bonds, an innovative financial instrument that pays a return to private investors who provide upfront funding to service providers who deliver agreed social outcomes including improved lives. Social Benefit Bonds are a ground breaking approach to funding specialist services for vulnerable people. The NSW Government is leading the way.

Savings generated from improving lives will enable the Government to redirect NSW funding to help more people as well as repay the upfront investment and provide a return.

$7 million in private capital has been raised by the Newpin Social Benefit Bond to expand UnitingCare Burnside’s Newpin program, which supports children in foster care to be safely restored to their families and prevents children at risk from entering care in the first place.

$1 million will be provided in 2013-14 for the implementation of the Newpin Social Benefit Bond ($8.5 million over four years).

$5.75 million will be provided in 2013-14 for a second social benefit bond. The Benevolent Society Social Benefit Bond will raise $10 million in private capital to fund the Intensive Family Support Service to help keep at-risk families together. The service will support more than 300 families who have been reported to Family and Community Services as being at-risk of significant harm.

  • Domestic and family violence reforms for more targeted and better integrated support services for high-risk victims, with a greater focus on prevention. To support implementation of the reforms $3 million will be provided in 2013-14 to support initiatives including the creation of a men’s telephone counselling and referral service, sector capacity building, prevention partnerships and building the evidence base on what works to prevent domestic and family violence.
  • Going Home Staying Home reforms which will improve homelessness services by focusing on prevention and earlier intervention and improving client access. These reforms will match funding to actual need, injecting greater fairness to how taxpayers’ money is spent, as well as developing the sector and its workforce to deliver improved services and lives.

$138 million will be invested in specialist homelessness services, including crisis and transitional support and practical assistance to help break the cycle of repeat homelessness.

  • Investment in a stronger Aboriginal Housing Office (AHO) of $149 million to improve the lives of Aboriginal people through safe, good quality housing.

The AHO will invest $26 million for the repair and maintenance of dwellings in the Aboriginal community housing sector, and $11 million to reform and strengthen the sector under the NSW Build and Grow strategy.

A further $49 million will be allocated to deliver 103 new dwellings under the National Partnership Agreement on Remote Indigenous Housing and through the AHO’s own capital works program.

  • Investing in Women, supporting innovative collaborative local projects to increase the participation of girls and women in non-traditional trades, with funding of $200,000.

Ms Goward said that the 2013-14 Budget builds on the NSW Government’s reform agenda and commitment to improving services and lives to those in the greatest need in NSW. “With this Budget, the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government once again delivers real reform to work better and smarter to improve lives,” Ms Goward said.