Community Services Committee
Tuesday 14 November 2017
Administrative Centre 30 Frances Street Randwick 2031
Telephone: 1300 722 542
Fax: 02 9319 1510
Notice is hereby given that a Community Services Committee of the Council of the City of Randwick will be held in the Council Chamber, First Floor, 90 Avoca Street Randwick on Tuesday, 14 November 2017 at 6:00 p.m.
Quorum: Eight (8) members
Apologies/Granting of Leave of Absences
Confirmation of the Minutes
Community Services Committee – 11 July 2017
Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests
Address of Committee by Members of the Public
In respect to Privacy & Personal Information Protection Act, members of the public are advised that the proceedings of this meeting will be recorded for the purposes of clause 69 of Council’s Code of Meeting Practice.
Community Services Reports
C6/17 Lexington Place Busking Competition and Coffee n Conversation Project........ 1
C7/17 NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network Award ................................... 5
Notice of Rescission Motions
Community Services Report No. C6/17
Subject: Lexington Place Busking Competition and Coffee n Conversation Project
Folder No: F2010/00433
The Lexington Place Busking Competition was first held in 2007, situated in a residential precinct just south of Maroubra Junction known as the Coral Sea Housing Estate. It became an annual event from 2010 onwards. This event has successfully engaged with the local community but in the past 2 years, the audience and participation rate of local residents living in the immediate residential precinct has diminished considerably.
Recent discussions held with young residents (aged between 12 to 18 years old) points to a potentially lower participation rate at this year’s 2017 event. A ‘soft launch’ promotion was sent out to members of the target group recently in October and only one local resident has indicated interest in participating. The current format, introduced some 10 years ago, is no longer the optimum way to engage with the local Lexington Place/Coral Sea Park community.
It is considered that the annual busking competition event format could be adapted to meet the current needs and aspirations of the local Lexington Place community by introducing a new approach at this year’s event. The combination of its music and street style busking elements and the Café n Conversation approach, described in this report, can be launched as the new format, in place of this year’s Lexington Place Busking Competition.
The Lexington Place Busking Competition was first held in 2007 in response to a Council resolution to hold a busking competition at Lexington Place shopping centre, Maroubra. In 2007, Council had completed a streetscape improvement program around this neighbourhood shopping centre. Improvement works included pavement resurfacing, installation of street lighting, construction of bike racks and garbage bins.
The purpose of the first event was to promote the Lexington Place upgrade and to engage with the community in a creative and visual display of local and professional street performance. Subsequently, Council resolved to fund another busking competition in 2010 at the same location. The 2010 event was designed to engage with the local community, and promote cultural and social development objectives.
Building on the event’s success, council staff recommended in a report to Council that a third busking competition be held in 2011 due to the high participation rates of local residents. Consequently, Council endorsed the recommendation which included the provision of a top up amount of $4,000 to the existing event budget. Since then, this event was allocated an annual budget of $7,000 from the youth activities budget. In the last couple of years, the actual costs of holding this event have exceeded the allocated budget by more than $4,500.
The 2015 busking competition saw a substantial decline in participation levels among local young residents. In an attempt to re-engage with this target group, music mentoring sessions were offered in partnership with Father Riley’s Youth Off the Street (YOTS). Four young residents from the housing estate surrounding Lexington Place entered the competition and one of them won first prize in the youth category. While the number of contestants from outside the neighbourhood remained constant, local participation level continued to decline despite complimentary mentoring sessions (a program to help refine performances) offered to the young residents.
In 2016, due to the low interest level of participants from the local neighbourhood, the event format was reviewed and altered to include a free lunch to attract local participants, their friends and family members. A different judging component was also introduced to allow members of the audience to assist in the judging of the contest. While the event received positive feedback, audience members were mainly parents of busking competitors, who were not from the immediate neighbourhood.
Recently in October 2017, a ‘soft launch’ promotion was sent out to members of the target group and only one local resident has indicated interest in participating. It is now apparent that this event, first introduced some 10 years ago, is no longer the optimum way to engage with the local Lexington Place/Coral Sea Park community. This may be attributed to the presence of Father Riley’s Youth Off the Streets (YOTS) Outreach Office which is currently operating from a shop at Lexington Place, providing activities for young residents
Due to the lack of interest in the busking competition, a different approach for engaging with local residents is needed at Lexington Place. Council officers has identified a successful community engagement and capacity building project established for residents of North St Marys (Penrith LGA), called Village Café. The local community of North St Marys shares similar demographic profiles with local community living in and around the Lexington Place/Coral Sea precinct.
It is proposed that a similar project, held on a fortnightly basis, can be established as an alternative to the annual Lexington Place Busking Competition. This alternative proposal would involve:
§ Establishing a pop-up project on a strip of council-owned land adjoining one end of the shopping strip at Lexington Place. This project which does not require a road closure, provides a place for local residents to connect with each other and enliven the shopping strip.
§ Operating on a fortnightly basis for 3 hours per pop-up session under a council-owned marquee, the project will be promoted to the local community as Coffee n Conversation, a place where residents can meet and chat over free coffee or tea
§ A coffee cart operator employed to provide free coffee, along with a busker/street-style musician to create a welcoming atmosphere and enliven the shopping centre.
The Coffee n Conversation project if endorsed by Council will also provide a ‘place’ where community workers can mingle with residents, and get to know about the services on offer. In this regard, council staff is negotiating with a foodbank organisation to provide affordable fresh fruit and vegetable supplies.
As isolation is a major issue for housing estate residents, particularly the elderly, carers and stay at home parents, this project aims to support both neighbourhood collaboration and place making activities. During the school holiday period, the pop-up events can also accommodate the interests of school aged residents and teenagers.
Compared with the annual busking competition, the proposed alternative fortnightly pop-up Coffee n Conversation Project is considered to be a more suitable model for encouraging social engagement in a supportive and non-competitive setting.
Subject to the Council’s approval, the first fortnightly pop-up can be planned for 6 December 2017.
Relationship to City Plan
The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:
Outcome 2: A vibrant and diverse community.
Direction 2d: Deliver and/or sponsor a range of cultural programs to promote a
sense of community.
Financial impact statement
The current budget allocation of $7000 to the annual Lexington Place Busking Competition would effectively cover the cost of entertainment during the fortnightly pop up Coffee n Conversation project. Other place-making and community building activities will be funded through existing grants received by Council, and contributions from government and non-government service providers.
The Lexington Place Busking Competition has been an effective community engagement event. However due to the decline in participation levels among the local young residents from the immediate neighbourhood, the annual competition format is no longer the most effective way to engage with the target group. Despite recent attempts at improving the annual event format, participation levels of local residents has continued to decline whilst costs have increased.
This report recommends that Council transform the annual busking competition into a fortnightly pop-up Coffee n Conversation format, as proposed in the body of this report. It will help enliven the Lexington Place shopping centre on days when the pop-up events are held.
The fortnightly pop-up Coffee n Conversation event is considered to be an appropriate and suitable model for promoting social interaction in a non-competitive setting.
Subject to the Council’s approval, the first fortnightly pop-up Coffee n Conversation event can be launched in December 2017 as the new format combining the cultural and place-making elements of the busking competition.
That the Council endorse:
a) the proposed new format of the Lexington Place Busking Competition event, which combines its cultural and place-making aspects with the elements of the Coffee n Conversation events as described in this report,
b) the first of the combined fortnightly pop-up events to be launched in December 2017.
Community Services Report No. C7/17
Subject: NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network Award
Folder No: F2004/06272
The purpose of this report is to inform the Community Services Committee that Randwick City Council staff member Melinda Leves was presented the NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network (LGAN) Award for Non-Aboriginal Council Employee for 2017 at its recent conference.
LGAN has been operating since 1988 and holds a State-wide annual conference for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal staff, Councilors, members of Aboriginal Advisory Committee, and community members, to discuss issues relating to Aboriginal communities.
The conference also formally recognizes Councils and individuals who have made significance contributions to the advancement of Aboriginal communities, through an Awards ceremony held on the last night of the conference. At this year’s conference presentation ceremony, held in Albury on 15 September, 8 Awards were announced and presented: Council of the Year; Council Indoor Aboriginal Employee; Council Outdoor Aboriginal Employee; Council non-Aboriginal Employee; Councillor of the Year; Council Partnership of the Year; Young Achiever of the Year; and the Councillor Pat Dixon Lifetime Achievement Award.
The judging committee for the LGAN Awards comprises of elected Indigenous Councillors, NSW Local Government Association staff and the executive members of the LGAN steering committee.
Melinda works with local Aboriginal service providers to help plan and deliver programs that addresses community needs. Widely respected by her peers in the community services sector, Melinda plays a lead role in coordinating and implementing the Council’s anti-domestic violence program in partnership with local support service providers.
Relationship to City Plan
The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:
Outcome: 2. A vibrant and diverse community
Direction: 2a. Meet the needs of our diverse community and provide equitable
access to social services and infrastructure.
Financial impact statement
There is no direct financial impact for this matter.
Melinda Leves, Community Project Officer with responsibility for La Perouse and Surrounding Suburbs, has worked with Council for 18 years. In being presented with the NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network (LGAN) Award for Non-Aboriginal Council Employee, 2017, Melinda’s long standing collaboration with our local Aboriginal organisations to deliver community programs and projects is formally acknowledged by her colleagues and the local Aboriginal community.
That the Community Services Committee acknowledges Melinda Leves’ outstanding work with Randwick City’s local Aboriginal community and congratulates her for receiving the 2017 NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network Award for Non-Aboriginal Council Employee of the Year.