STRATEGIC DIRECTIONS 2010-2013

Mission Statement  

Knox Infolink Inc provides confidential and impartial information to the community with the aim to empower individuals to make informed decisions which will enhance their quality of life

Introduction

Knox Infolink is not for profit organisation whose principal function is community information provision.

Employing community development principles in our mode of operation, we offer clients relevant, comprehensive and accruate information, support and referral services to assist people to become more independent and contributing members of the community

Knox Infolink Inc is also the main provider of emergency relief assistance for the City of Knox, our aim being being to help and assist the citizens of Knox who are finding themselves in necessitous circumstances. All services are offered free by professional staff and trained volunteers

Knox Infolink Inc is governed by Committee of Management (COM). The COM role is to provide leadership and overall strategy. The COM has the responsiblity of ensuring Knox Infolink Inc's finances are sound, operations are legal and its procedures are functional.

Knox Infolink Inc is a member agency of Community Information Victoria, (CiVIC) and is funded and support by Knox City Council

Services Knox Infolink Inc Intends to Provide

Information & referral

Emergency assistance (food vouchers and food parcels

No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS)

Tax Help (July-October)

Telstra Assistance Program

Interpreting Service

TTY relay service for hearing & speech impaired people

Fax service for unemployed people sending resumes to prospective employees

Our Community

The City of Knox is located in outer-eastern Melbourne and is one of the most populous municipalities in Victoria with almost 153,000 residents living in eleven localities.

These include the suburbs of:

• Ferntree Gully

• Upper Ferntree Gully

• Boronia

• The Basin

• Rowville

• Wantirna

• Wantirna South

• Lysterfield

• Knoxfield

• Scoresby

• Bayswater.

Knox embraces the multi-cultural ethos of modern Australia, with 137,000 residents from different countries

and 17% are from non-English speaking backgrounds.

Strategic Directions 2010-2013

Strategic Direction 1 – Raising Our Profile

Networking

• Continue to promote Knox Infolink Inc and its activities to the broader community, other service providers and agencies through regular liaison, public speaking, annual surveys and meetings, attendance at service provider expos and other appropriate activities.

• Continue forging close relationships with other agencies such as Knox Community Health Service, Anglicare, Eastern Community Legal Service and Eastern Access Community Health (EACH), enabling exchange of referral services and extending provision of Knox Infolink’s emergency relief services to clients who would not otherwise be aware of what is available to Knox residents.

• Continue to build relationships with regional service clubs (such as Apex, Lions, CWA, Rotary etc) to identify new areas of support by sponsorship or material donations.

• Continue to establish relationships with educational institutions such as Swinburne University, Monash University to assist current students in their work placements and utilise their skills.

• Continue to attend and work within network groups. Some of these include:

Ø Knox Accord Project

Continue involvement within the Knox Accord Project, a community strengthening initiative aimed towards enhancing women’s safety within Knox and raising community awareness regarding family violence.

Ø Emergency Relief Network –

Continue involvement in the Emergency Relief Network which is a network of agencies and organisations that provide emergency relief and material aid such as food vouchers and food parcels to people in financial crisis living within the City of Knox.

Ø Aston Community Forum

Continue involvement in the Aston Community Forum which is the coming together of community organisation to network and discuss information, issues and receiving up dates arising in the Knox.

Ø No Interest Loan Scheme Regional Network Meetings

Continue to attend the regional network meetings to gain updated information on the No Interest Loan Scheme program and meet with other No Interest Loan Scheme providers.

Improved publicity

• Continue to monitor and prepare written materials (flyers, brochures etc) and resources to present Knox Infolink in a professional and positive manner to the broader community.

• Continue to develop and encourage relationships with local community news publications (such as the Boronia and The Basin Community news and the Rowville Community News), to present Knox Infolink Inc articles on the history of the organisation, ongoing service delivery, cameos on previous local volunteers etc.

• Continue to promote recruitment and training opportunities available at Knox Infolink for prospective volunteers by using free advertising opportunities through avenues.

• Explore opportunities in non-traditional environments to promote Knox Infolink Inc

• Continue to seek public speaking engagements

Agency website

Continue the regular update/expansion of the existing Knox Infolink website with an emphasis on its potential to promote the agency and its services to the wider Knox community. Also to further develop the website to allow instant accessibility by providing a multi user-friendly information service online for the disabled, hearing impaired and CALD clients etc.

Explore other online technology.

Succession Planning

• Encourage Knox Infolink Inc volunteers to actively participate as members of the Committee of Management (COM) involved in the decision-making for running the Agency.

• Regularly invite newcomers to attend meetings and mentor for committee positions.

• Continue recruitment of external members for the Committee of Management.

Strategic Direction 2 – Expanding Our Service

Community Information services

Continue to update and maintain extensive pamphlet service, community information database and website that inform the Knox community of available services and information.

Staff training & skills

Continue to conduct ongoing training and skills assessment to maximise efficient service delivery. Continue to investigate new training opportunities to address the changing needs in the community such as dealing with distressed clients.

A priority is extra training for volunteers regarding the proficient use of the TTY machine, thus ensuring ready access to Knox Infolink Inc services for the hearing impaired.

Community Directory

Continue to update the community directory to meet the needs of the local community. The directory will continue to incorporate such incidentals as budgetary tips as well as resource information and popular community information, such as pre-school and childcare centres, hall bookings, recreational activities and retirement villages etc.

No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS)

Continue in the provision of No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) through the Good Shepherd Youth and Family Service. The program will continue to be available to eligible low income residents of the Knox area.

Improved technology

Continue accessing improved technology where it is able to enhance the quality and quantity of services offered to the community. This includes the continual update/expansion of the existing Knox Infolink Inc website to maximise its potential as a community information service, including basic material on laws and regulations.

Identify service gaps and needs within the community

Utilise Knox Infolink Inc service information to identify trends within the community, and address service gaps and needs as they arise.

Explore a mailbox service for homeless people.

Strategic Direction 3 Advocating for our Clients

Advocating to improve government policy/practice

Utilise our information and statistics to exercise a responsible influence on the development of appropriate social policies and services. An example would be the collation of rental statistics in the region for analysis of low income recipients, high costs of private rentals, lack of public housing availability, increasing demands for emergency relief and financial assistance.

Statistics collection

Review/update the existing statistics collection sheet in order that it reflects the changing nature of community service and the diversity of advocacy and assistance offered by the agency.

Explore and develop alternative ways of dealing with client information.

Developing work Projects/Plans

Continue to participate in workshops and seminars.

Identify initiatives that enhance service access and increase community engagement, particularly for those who are disadvantaged or marginalised.

Strategic Direction 4 Exploring Additional Resourcing Initiatives

Recruitment and support

Continue to explore and recruit volunteers in roles such as receptionist, administration support, food donation and packaging, and development of promotion material.

Further Funding

To seek additional sources of funding to expand the services offered by the agency and enhance the current programs/services offered.

Continue to seek cost effective alternative supplier for goods such as stationery, nappies etc

VicRelief & Foodbank

Continue accessing the no-cost services of VicRelief & Foodbank on a regular basis.

Grants/philanthropist trusts

Develop a calendrical index of philanthropist trusts and sources of community grants in order to submit appropriate applications on an annual basis for updating technical and office equipment, specific media promotions, volunteer benefits and training purposes.

Planning/Implementation & Review Cycle

Annual Plan

Ø Business Operational Plan

Ø Risk Management Plan

Ø Budget Allocations

Ø Annual review and update of policies and procedures

Ø Represent the community within the COM by attracting prospective Community Representative Member(s) from the local community or business sources etc.

Ø Produce Annual Report

Review Processes

Ø Review all annual targets, policies and procedures

Ø Employee Performance Reviews

Ø Volunteer Performance Appraisals

Ø Program Evaluations

Donate

When you financially support Knox Infolink Inc, your tax-deductible-dollar (receipt can be provided) goes towards helping those in our community who are in desperate need of assistance with food parcels, toiletries and other material aid.

While the Knox City Council provides the operational & administrative costs, your donations go directly to supporting the community of Knox. You can donate directly to the following three different programs:

  1. Knox InfoLink - Food parcels and toiletries
  2. Share the Joy - Christmas Appeal
  3. Shopnate - Material aid (clothing, swags, blankets, etc.)

We would also appreciate donations of non-perishable food items and toiletries at our office.
Your support is greatly appreciated.