The Maranguka Initiative: Bourke, New South Wales

MarangukaThe Maranguka Initiative — the first major justice reinvestment project in Australia — is designed to create better coordinated support to vulnerable families and children in Bourke (located in North West New South Wales). It involves establishing community-led, multi-disciplinary teams working in partnership with relevant government and non-government agencies and organisations to focus on:

  • Developing a new accountability framework for addressing Aboriginal disadvantage; and
  • Developing a fiscal framework that ensures the long-term sustainability of effective programs and services.

The Maranguka initiative responded to community concerns over the level of youth offending, the lack of detailed outcome-driven evaluations of the numerous programs delivering services into Bourke and the short-term nature of the funding allocated by government for these programs. In order to provide effective programs and services, the Bourke community identified a critical need for a framework that will provide long-term, sustainable funding.

The project is being designed and will be delivered using an approach known as Collective Impact, a different form of collaboration with dedicated roles and a purpose built structure which focuses on the design of solutions to complex problems and the development of evidence based policy and shared measures to address system level change.

Through applying the Collective Impact framework over the next 3 years, the following elements will be strengthened and developed in Bourke:

  • A whole-of-community and whole-of-government common agenda to reduce youth crime and increase community safety
  • Shared measures for change based on real-time data
  • A common approach, based on best evidence, for creating change in the shared measures and developing the will and capability within the system to implement these responses
  • A backbone organisationto perform the necessary functions of facilitating the collaboration, continuously communicating and tracking change in the shared measures.
  • A clear financial pictureof the cost of implementation and the costs saved through effective implementation.

KPMG have undertaken two reports on the Maranguka Justice Reinvestment initiative –  a Preliminary Assessment in 2016 Unlocking the Future accessible here; and an Economic Impact Report in 2018 accessible here.

For up to date and detailed information of the different programs being implemented as part of the Maranguka Justice Reinvestment initiative visit the Just Reinvest website, accessible here.

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Maranguka Site Update March – June 2019

  • 15th and 16th set of Working Groups were held in Bourke.
  • Recruited for three positions – the Community Engagement, Communications and Data Support Officer, the Maranguka Youth Support Research and Coordination officer and the Operations Director
  • CLC NSW and Ashurst travelled to Bourke to support media and communications work and work around case studies and testimonials.
  • The Maranguka Education, Employment and Training Community Summit was held in Bourke 28-29th of May.
  • Completed the Report on “Maranguka: the first 5 years” for funders.
  • Mapped what was available for young people at risk of suspension, returning from suspension and while suspended in Bourke
  • The Premier and Deputy Premier came to Bourke
  • Minister Paul Fletcher came to Bourke
  • The Bourke Tribal Council confirmed their governance structure with the assistance of Mick Gooda.
  • Worked through some of the data work requirements for Bourke and other communities.
  • There are large amounts of government engagement at every level. There is:
    • Cross Sector Leadership Group- Minister Hazzard and Gary Barnes as the Coordinator General.
    • Their Futures Matter (FACS)– redesigning service accessibility for non-serious reports of risk of harm – Service Sector Support
    • Data Analytic Centre (DAC) – doing a piece on data and employment. What the value of employment is and retaining employment- ripple effects and economic benefit.
    • DSS – Stronger places, Stronger people – they really want community governance to work – it makes things easier for the government as well.