The Community Builders program provides funding for a range of services to strengthen communities and build their capacity.
These services include:
- community and neighbourhood centres where people can meet and access resources
- services and projects targeting particular groups such as men, women and cultural groups
- projects to support and build communities and community organisations, such as by providing mentoring schemes and management training.
Why is this program important?
Community Builders was developed in response to evidence showing that making communities stronger is an effective way of reducing inequality and disadvantage.
Strong communities are more resilient, and are better able to respond to challenges.
Community Builders services are open to communities in NSW with a strong focus on assisting disadvantaged groups in the community.
Disadvantaged groups may include people on low incomes, people who are isolated due to where they live, people who have little or no access to community resources meaning they are not able to participate in community life and activities.
What does the program deliver?
Services funded by Community Builders fit into 4 service activity categories:
- Community hubs are local centres that help improve the community’s connectedness and capacity e.g. by providing information and referral on local services; access to the internet, access to skills training, and a place for local groups to meet.
- Community skills development projects work directly with community members to increase their ability to participate in their community e.g. through recruiting and training volunteers; providing training in mentoring and leadership and by providing training in how to establish and run community organisations.
- Community capacity building projects help build community strength by building links between community members with a focus on including disadvantaged groups e.g. by holding social or cultural events or by setting up a community network around a shared issue.
- Community sector development projects build the capacity of service providers to work together on issues affecting their communities through the provision of professional learning, mentoring and network development skills.
How does it work?
Community Builders funds ongoing services through the Community Builders Renewable sub-program and fixed term projects through Community Builders Fixed Term. Fixed term projects are usually identified through an annual tender process and can be for periods of between 1 and 3 years.
In total, over 570 Community Builders services are delivered by non-government organisations and local councils, funded through Family and Community Services.
Funded services are required to demonstrate that the services they provide meet the needs of the local area and address local, district and Government priorities.
Community Builders NSW is an interactive online hub for everyone involved in community level social, economic and environmental change. This website provides the opportunity for community leaders, community and government workers, volunteers, academics, policy makers, businesses and philanthropic organisations to explore insights in engaging, building and strengthening communities.