28/05/2020

Listening to Our Mob Speak


Listening, deep listening, to our communities


HUNDREDS of yarns will underpin a community-driven initiative aimed at ensuring Mallee District Aboriginal Services (MDAS) is hearing the needs and concerns of local communities and helping Mallee communities thrive.
Under the new Our Mob Speaks community engagement program, a dedicated community engagement team plans to speak to 400 people every three months across Mildura, Swan Hill, Kerang and Robinvale.
MDAS acting chief executive officer Andy Charles said it was a listening process that would encourage people to talk about whatever is on their mind and how MDAS can best support them.
“MDAS is here for our mobs across the Mallee, but to make sure we can fully support all communities, this process will allow us to be truly listening to Our Mob Speak,” MDAS Chief Executive Officer Andy Charles explained.
“The information gathered through these yarns will be essential for us to continue improving MDAS services.  The feedback will also be used to talk with government about community concerns and ideas, to make sure we are attracting the right investment to support our communities.”
The Our Mob Speaks approach draws on the deep wisdom, strength and resolve of Aboriginal people living in the Mallee, both past and present.  The engagement program will be driven by John Jackson, Ian Kirby, John Mitchell and Sarah Nalder.
When talking to young people, families and Elders, MDAS community engagement team will record only what community member have said, not who said it. 
“We know just how important this is so everyone can feel safe to talk about what’s on their mind,” Mr Mitchell said.
“To ensure we hear the voices of our mobs and generations across the Mallee, we need people to understand that all information and feedback shared will be treated confidentially.”

MDAS plans to keep community members in the loop with regular feedback and updates posted on the organisation’s website and Facebook page.
“Our first yarns will be about talking about how MDAS can support community recover from COVID-19,” Mr Mitchell said.
“The period of COVID-19 has formed some excellent new partnerships with our community, and it’s marked a real change in how we work,” he said.
“Our goal is to continue that momentum now, and together to shape the future that we want for our children today and their children into the future.”
To find out more about Our Mob Speaks, and for regular updates on what it is achieving, check the MDAS website and Facebook page.
www.mdas.org.au/ourmobspeaks
https://www.facebook.com/MalleeDistrictAboriginalServices/


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MALLEE DISTRICT ABORIGINAL SERVICES  “Our Vision: Generations of vibrant, healthy and strong Aboriginal communities”
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MILDURA
120 Madden Avenue Mildura
Phone (03) 5018 4100

SWAN HILL
70 Nyah Road Swan Hill
Phone (03) 5032 8600

KERANG
9 Nolan Street Kerang
Phone (03) 5412 6004




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MDAS - Quality Innovation Performance Accredited
MDAS - Quality Innovation Performance Accredited