It’s been 18 months since the Sunshine Coast Community Strategy Leadership Group (CSLG) was created and during that time the group has gone from strength to strength in advocating priorities for the region.
The CSLG is made up of leaders from across the Sunshine Coast community including council, the Thompson Institute, University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) and Department of Housing and Public Works.
Sunshine Coast Council Community Portfolio Councillor and CSLG member David Law said he was proud to be part of a forward-thinking and progressive group.
“The Sunshine Coast community is at the heart of the Community Strategy 2019-2041 and the CSLG,” Councillor Law said.
“Council has been working with the CSLG to develop ways to support community and government-led action and advocacy in response to local issues and opportunities.
“By working together, and there is always more work to do, we can ensure all our Sunshine Coast communities are healthy and active, vibrant and accessible, connected, resilient and inclusive, and creative and innovative.
“Keeping community conversations going and working together will be the most important way we can continue to shape a future where together we thrive.”
Achievements during the first term of the CSLG include:
- Establishing the Sunshine Coast community hub initiative as a response to support those experiencing homelessness through COVID-19
- Advocacy and support to advance a Youth Housing Project in Nambour
- Input and advocacy into the Planning Scheme review process and considerations and opportunities for affordable and accessible housing
- Development and delivery of the FestiveKindness initiative throughout Christmas 2020
- Delivering the Community Strategy Forum in May 2020 to discuss how we create a shared, inclusive regional identity together
- Establishing dialogue and partnerships on sport and recreation initiatives with multicultural communities
- Supporting and partnering on respective strategic action plans and priorities of CSLG member organisations
- Providing a meaningful voice and contribution into the implementation, collaboration and advocacy of the Community Strategy priorities and actions
- Facilitating connections between other levels of government, agencies, community organisations and community.
Be: Executive, Strategy and Impact, (formerly ComLink) Vicky Meyer said she was proud to be part of the CSLG in advancing the Youth Housing project in Nambour.
“As a group we saw an opportunity to look at youth homelessness, and an opportunity to activate a challenging site,” Ms Meyer said (pictured below).
“Collectively we advocated in our community to explain what we wanted to do with the site, including a number of the CSLG visiting local residents.
“That collective power was palpable.
“You could feel the energy in the room and the drive and commitment behind that cause.
“Everyone from their diverse background came with their own piece of the jigsaw which made us a whole. With that we were so much more powerful to advocate and be very solutions focused.
“That’s been really powerful for me personally but as a group we’ve really brought about a tangible change.”
Ms Meyer said the opportunities for the group were endless, going into 2022.
“We’ve only scratched the surface,” she said.
“The next piece for me is how we’re looking at the linkages between the Regional Economic Development Strategy and the Environment and Liveability Strategy and how people can work and live on the Sunshine Coast, while also maintaining the beautiful environment.”
Priorities include developing a video series with a focus on inclusion within our community.
The standing term for the current CSLG membership concludes in June 2022. Expressions of Interest for people to become part of the CSLG will open in April 2022.
The current CSLG members are:
- Sunshine Coast Council Community Portfolio Councillor David Law
- Andrew Elvin, CEO of Coast2Bay;
- David Hollinsworth, Adjunct Professor, University of the Sunshine Coast;
- Vicky Meyer, Executive, Strategy and Impact, Be;
- James O’Brien, Regional Director, Department of Housing and Public Works;
- Mervat Quirke, Manager – Strategic Partnerships, Thompson Institute;
- Tim Wess, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of the Sunshine Coast;
- Phil Smith, Principal, Gomango Architects;
- Tegan Schefe, Regional Implementation Manager, Thirrili, and
- Kathy Rogers, Senior Advisor North Coast Region, Sport and Recreation, Department of Housing and Public Works.
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