Many council and government facilities serve a single purpose at a specific point in time. As community needs change, these facilities have to adapt and find new ways to meet these needs. One way is to modernise facilities to provide a range of different services. The Walwa Bush Nursing Centre is an example of how an older community hospital reinvented itself. Read more about this example below.
Government can co-locate a range of services in a single community facility. Co-locating services together in a shared facility benefits individuals and groups and supports smoother transitions between services. They also create opportunities to access a wider range of services. Potential services that can be co-located include:
- primary and allied health
- child and family services, and
- housing, legal and financial support services.
They can also provide consulting rooms and community spaces. The examples below show how local facilities can evolve to meet diverse and changing community needs.
Shared social infrastructure in action
Story from Shepparton: a football and netball club also a leadership hub
The Shepparton Rumbalara Football Netball Club has a long association with the Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-Operative. The club provides a leadership training hub for the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, as well as netball training. It now provides a range of training, education, health, leadership and social support programs.
Story from Murray: Old bush nursing hospital turned into a health and wellbeing centre
The Walwa Bush Nursing Centre is located in an isolated town on the upper Murray. The facility exists because of a community campaign following the closure of its eight-bed hospital. The facility was transformed with community fundraising and state government grants. The new health and wellbeing centre is now a mix of health services and community centre. It houses:
- General Practitioners
- district nursing
- home care
- emergency first response
- outpatient clinic
- community centre
- IT centre
- banking services
- RUM radio
- community car
- meals on wheels
- health services
- counselling services.
Since 2006, the community operate the community-owned not-for-profit centre successfully.
What are our draft recommendations?
Immediately undertake collaborative inter-agency planning for regional social services to identify opportunities for multipurpose shared facilities, then deliver them where appropriate in partnership with local governments and community organisations.
Fund rural and regional councils over the next five years to update, repurpose and retire outdated community infrastructure for better service delivery.
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Click on the headings below to learn more about our draft recommendations on culture and education and training
Victoria’s Aboriginal population will grow more than twice as fast as the general population in the next ten years. This means Aboriginal Victorians’ service needs will likely expand, in different places. Equally, supporting infrastructure will need to expand.
We recommend developing a plan with Traditional Owners. The plan will guide investment in Aboriginal community-controlled infrastructure.
Aboriginal people have lived here for more than a thousand generations. Their traditions have attracted many international travellers. We recommend that the government partners with Traditional Owners to develop an Aboriginal tourism strategy. The strategy should protect and promote assets and provide more jobs for Aboriginal communities.
What are we recommending?
Immediately commence a co-design process with Aboriginal Victorians to develop a plan to guide investment in Aboriginal community-controlled infrastructure to meet current and future social, economic and cultural needs.
Partner with Traditional Owners to develop a Victorian Aboriginal tourism strategy in the next five years to guide future Aboriginal tourism investments, including through Joint Management Plans.
Melbourne’s new growth areas, and urban renewal precincts, are accommodating significant population growth. We need to support residents in these new communities to access jobs, education and services.
What are we recommending?
In the next five years, develop and publish long term infrastructure plans for priority infrastructure sectors for which the Victorian Government maintains substantial responsibilities, including sequencing and timelines for investment.
Within two years, empower an appropriate government body to monitor infrastructure delivery in new growth areas and priority urban renewal precincts, and proactively advise on delivery sequencing and funding. In the next five years, develop program business cases for growth areas and precincts that consider the timing, sequencing and funding of necessary infrastructure.
Draft recommendation 87. Fund regional libraries to provide better internet accessFund regional libraries to provide better internet access (Victoria's Draft 30-Year Infrastructure Strategy 28.9 MB, PDF)
Immediately provide funding for regional and rural libraries to improve community access to fast, free internet services, leveraging existing library infrastructure.
Retrofit or better use selected rural school infrastructure for children’s specialist and allied telehealth services to improve children’s health and development. Immediately begin with a trial in Wimmera Southern Mallee.
Fund more Youth Foyers in regional Victoria, beginning with Geelong, Wodonga and Bendigo by 2026, to build on existing education infrastructure and support vulnerable young people.