Indigenous Advancement Strategy
The Australian Government recently announced a new approach to engaging and supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in priority areas, including children and schooling, employment, and safety and wellbeing.
The new approach, the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS), began on 1 July 2014 and replaces more than 150 individual programmes and activities with five flexible and broad-based programme streams:
- Jobs, Land and Economy – aiming to get adults into work, foster viable Indigenous business and assist Indigenous people to generate economic and social benefits from land and sea use and native title rights, particularly in remote areas.
- Children and Schooling – focusing on getting children to school, improving education outcomes including Year 12 attainment, improving youth transition to vocational and higher education and work, as well as supporting families to give children a good start in life through improved early childhood development, care, education and school readiness.
- Safety and Wellbeing – ensuring the ordinary law of the land applies in Indigenous communities, and that Indigenous people enjoy similar levels of physical, emotional and social wellbeing enjoyed by other Australians.
- Culture and Capability – supporting Indigenous Australians to maintain their culture, participate equally in the economic and social life of the nation and ensure that Indigenous organisations are capable of delivering quality services to their clients.
- Remote Australia Strategies – addressing social and economic disadvantage in remote Australia and support flexible solutions based on community and government priorities.
The new streams have been designed to cut red-tape, making it easier for organisations delivering services to apply for funding, manage contracts, and make a positive impact on the communities they serve.
The national funding round for IAS will open on 8 September 2014 and close 4 weeks later. The funding round will offer calendar year funding from 1 January 2015, or financial year funding from 1 July 2015, as required. Applicants may submit funding requests for time-limited opportunities, such as the creation of an Indigenous job, at any time.
The IAS is being supported by the establishment of a new staff network in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C). The PM&C Network will move to a regional model ensuring that its staff are located closer to the people and communities they will be working with, and able to develop and implement local solutions to improve outcomes in the Government’s priority areas.