Communities are empowered, connected, mentally healthy and living with purpose in a changing world.
In December the towns of Ceduna/ Far West, Kimba, and Cummins were chosen by the Advisory Committee to join Kangaroo Island as fully funded communities under Our Town.
This was after an eleventh hour decision by the Fay Fuller Foundation Board to increase the funding available in order to cover an additional town for the duration of the 10-year partnership. In addition to this the Board was also able to provide bridging funding to Berri and Mid Murray for the first half of 2021 while we seek additional funding partners.
In 2018 the Fay Fuller Foundation commissioned the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) in partnership with The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI) to undertake research into the health needs and priorities of South Australia. The Health Needs and Priorities in South Australia report uncovered a significant gap between the perceived provision of services from the top, and the actual accessibility of services for individuals. This gap was even more apparent in rural and regional areas. Further insights found that people living in non-metropolitan areas experienced higher rates of mental health challenges and were less likely to seek help.
Our Town was designed as a place based, long-term initiative to address the limits of clinical response services in rural areas by supporting community determined responses to mental health and wellbeing in rural and regional towns in South Australia.
In recognising that financial resourcing is more effective when accompanied by other means of support the Foundation partnered with TACSI and Clear Horizon to provide mentorship and technical assistance to communities during both the discovery phase and throughout the course of the ten year the partnership.
Joined the initiative to provide regular coaching and capability building sessions for the town teams and to foster learning across the communities. They developed an incredible set of tools to guide the process as towns delved deep and tested some assumptions about the underlying reasons for the mental health challenges facing their towns.
Joined the initiative to tailor a monitoring and evaluation framework to drive an equitable and deeply informed selection process. Throughout the discovery phase they directly supported towns to collect and assess data and over the course of the partnership they will help the towns to reflect on what success looks like for each place and how it can be measured.