Dear Colleague,

I hope you are finding that ‘inner-strength’ that we all need to draw on to get us through the many challenges that we are facing in response to our efforts to slow down the spread of COVID-19.

The rapid pace and level of impact are almost incomprehensible. Hardest hit will be those that are already the most vulnerable members of our community, and as job losses continue and more businesses and services are closed, the numbers of people in need of support will increase significantly.

LEAD’s commitment to supporting frontline workers and organisations in the community and family support services sector through these difficult times remains our focus. Over the last 35 years LEAD’s resilience, agility and flexibility have enabled us to respond to the support and professional development requirements of our sector, and we are ready to continue meeting the current and emerging needs.

Shaped by our priority to maintain the safety of LEAD’s staff, our stakeholders and our participants, our new regime includes:

  • Continuation of our business hours– we have closed our physical office, but staff are working remotely and are ready to take your call or respond to your email:

Monday to Friday

9.00 am to 4.00 pm.

0439 048 449

  • Facilitation of learning events– we are working with our team of trainers and facilitators to bring you digital access to workshops, seminars and forums. Details of these will be provided through our regular updates;
  • Postponement of Scheduled Face-to-Face workshops-until at the end of May 2020. We are currently contacting all registered participants and offering them a credit to be used when the event is rescheduled, or a full refund. If this period is extended, we will be in contact with you;
  • eLearning options– we will build on our successful rollout of eLearning courses developed for NSW teachers. Our interactive and engaging eLearning events give you the added flexibility of participating at a time that suits you, and there are no parking hassles! Topics will include On The Run (Accidental) Counselling, Self-care, Mental Health During Periods of Unpredictability, Working in Isolation/Working Remotely, Resilience During Uncertainty, with new content being added as they are developed;
  • Zoom meetings & networks– we will facilitate and participate in meetings, forums and discussion groups across our district. A great example of this was this week’s Linker Network Working Group Meeting– conducted via a teleconference. All participants agreed to continue to focus on this important initiative despite the barriers of the current environment;
  • DCJ Contract Support– following on from our successful DEX training sessions we are developing a zoom version that captures the practical set up of organisation’s DEX reporting frameworks. We will also be continuing our Program Logic support sessions, to provide individual customised support to organisations that may not be eligible for NCOSS funded TEI Support. Also coming will be “Integrating Program Logic & DEX into Your Organisation” a customised service that will help you to develop and integrate new policies, procedures and forms that will enable your organisation to be TEI ready by 1 June 2020;
  • Aboriginal Workforce Development– under the guidance of the amazing Kerrie-Anne White LEAD is exploring culturally appropriate ways to continue to support and develop local Aboriginal workers;
  • Resource Development– we will continue to develop new resources that support our sector. Our latest version of “Diversity in Practice” is almost ready for release, and our updated “Implementing Evidence-Based Practices” report will be available next month;
  • Corporate Governance & Policies – now could be an ideal time for some organisations to review their Governance knowledge and update their organisation’s policies. We can arrange for a “Policy Audit & Stocktake”, to identify if there are policies that you should have in place, and review those that may be in need of an update.

As Team LEAD continues to monitor this fast-changing environment, we will keep you informed and share our knowledge.  However, as this space is becoming increasingly saturated, we will not duplicate existing generic guidelines and updates on COVID-19, there are multiple Government agencies and organisations regularly forwarding these links and updates. Rather than drown you in even more emails, we will focus on sharing knowledge, resources and learning opportunities specifically on:

  • Supporting front-line workers so they can effectively continue to assist people experiencing vulnerability;
  • Working with organisations to assist them to proactively maintain the safety and morale of their staff, preparing to be TEI ready and ensuring governance and compliance requirements are up to date;
  • Offering a wide scope of interactive and engaging eLearning courses;
  • Culturally appropriate support for Aboriginal workers and organisations.

As always, LEAD welcomes your feedback and requests for any specific professional development activities. On behalf of Team LEAD, I urge you all to stay safe, be kind to one another and mindful of those who may be experiencing vulnerability for the first time in their lives, or at a level not felt previously.

Kerry Palejs

Chief Executive Officer