With rapid and unprecedented growth and dynamic change being seen in the social service sector, there has never been more of a need for upskilling and training for leaders to help them to best lead their teams forward. As noted in the 10 Year Community Services Industry Plan, “To continue to meet community expectations and people’s needs, the community services industry will need to undergo significant change, placing responsibility and pressure on boards and organisational and industry leaders to be adaptive and to manage ongoing change in the social, economic and policy environment.”
There is a recognised deep-seated need within the family violence sector for training and support to enable sectors leaders to build their knowledge and capabilities to navigate an ever-changing landscape. FSSI’s Leadership Intensive Program addresses this need.
FSSI has delivered leadership training to over 300 participants both face to face and through online learning platforms. Piloted initially in 2017 as “Executive Masterclasses”, the program aims to strengthen leadership capabilities within the family violence sector through the training of the leaders.
The Program uses a co-design approach which enables participants to provide input to the program the content. An evaluation enables participants to provide feedback throughout the program and allows FSSI to recalibrate the program content and delivery to meet participant needs.
The program has been delivered to 15 cohorts, including regionally-based cohorts in Ararat, Benalla, Bendigo, Mildura, Shepparton and Traralgon. In response to the global health crisis the 2020 program is being delivered solely online. Moving to an online platform in 2020 to deliver the program has allowed for broader participation from participants across Victoria, which allows for both regional and metro participants to interact together rather than solely with their colleagues in their own areas. The aim of the Leadership Intensive Program is to strengthen leadership capabilities within the family violence sector through the training of the leaders.
Nearly 50 incredible and insightful guest speakers have been involved in the project since 2018, including former Chief Commissioner of the Victoria Police, Christine Nixon and CEO of VCOSS, Emma King. The speakers involved in the Program have received consistent positive feedback, with some being involved in multiple iterations of the Program. Past speakers have included Ro Allen, Victoria’s first gender and sexuality commissioner, Colleen Pearce, Victoria’s Public Advocate and Kemi Nekvapil, coach, speaker and author.
FSSI plans to continue to deliver the Leadership Intensive Program to family violence sector leaders under Action 4.1 of Strengthening the Foundations: First Rolling Action Plan 2019 -2022. We hope to see the online iteration of the Program continue to provide family violence sector colleagues from across Victoria to come together in one place for leadership training.
Family Safety Victoria