Community Integration Program (CIP)
What is the Community Integration Program (CIP)?
The aim of the Community Integration Program (CIP) is to link every child and young person in residential care into their local community.
It is anticipated that the support and encouragement offered to these children through the CIP will enable them to build the confidence and capacity to move towards independent living, through being connected with people in their community.
The key objectives are:
- To increase opportunities for young people in residential care to explore, access and pursue positive interests and activities that are meaningful for them.
- To increase confidence and build capacity of young people in residential care, through the support of a community-based volunteer to develop diverse, positive and sustainable connections.
- To use an interest and activity based approach for young people to build the capacity to form and develop relationships and networks within the community over time.
- To work with community groups to raise awareness of the challenges young people in residential care experience and foster a community attitude and culture of welcome to encourage community Involvement in the CIP.
- To provide the CIP to targeted Residential Care homes where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people reside and where possible, to provide Aboriginal volunteers for links to Aboriginal young people.
The Community Integration Program is across three regions, North and West Metro, Southern Metro and Gippsland.
Each region the program is co-ordinated by a Community Integration Leader (CIL) who recruits and trains suitable volunteers, and facilitates and supports the connections between volunteers and young people in residential care participating in the program.
The program recruits and trains community-based volunteers who support young people in residential care to develop interests that help them to build networks and connections. This may include a local sports club, a cultural activity, volunteering, or a self-development activity.
An accredited Volunteer will meet regularly with the young person to help get them involved with their chosen activity. The volunteer will support the young person to join a club or organisation and help them build up the confidence to become, and remain, involved in their chosen activity.
The young person and volunteer may choose to explore several different interests before deciding to remain involved in one particular activity.
CIP working with Care Teams
The CIL will work in collaboration with the partner agencies to:
- Provide regular updates on the young person’s progress in the program.
- Identify and address other issues aimed at improving outcomes for young people participating in the program.
- The CIP seeks to enhance Residential Care Youth Workers in their role to prompt the development of young people according to the Charter for Children in out of home care.
- The CIL will provide information to assist with the young person’s case planning and Looking After Children documentation such as cultural plans, transition plans and life books.
- The CIP is able to support Residential Care Youth Workers with linking the young person into a community activity.
To volunteer with the CIP please contact the relevant Community Integration Leader:
North West Region
Mackillop Family Services Office
Community Integration Leader
PH: 0417 675 430
Community Intergration Leader
PH: 0406 839 632