Financial Stress in Growth Areas (FIGA)

A partnership project between state and local governments, community organisations, the financial sector and community.

The Southern Metropolitan Region’s (SMR) data and service provision indicators have indicated that many families in the growth areas of Casey and Cardinia have been experiencing financial stress due to high mortgages, other credit lines and increased travel costs.

In 2010, the SMR partners identified and explored initiatives to improve the service system response to financial stress through enhancing the existing systems and evolving the capacity of the system. The following action plan has been adopted.

Key priority area one: establish a sustainable and effective cross-agency governance arrangement

Objective 1.1 Develop a multi-disciplined leadership group

Objective 1.2 Identify engagement and reporting pathways that will maximise opportunities for success

Key priority area two: develop an understanding of the existing service sector

Objective 2.1 Develop a service mapping system

Objective 2.2 Develop an understanding of critical indicators of financial stress

Key priority three: enhance capacity of existing and future workforce

Objective 3.1 Identify capacity of existing workforce to respond to financial stress

Objective 3.2 Establish process for sustainable sector engagement and action

Key priority area four: increase community awareness with a focus on prevention

Objective 4.1 Establish social change and acceptance of the need to ask for help at the earliest stages.

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