CSF AR2018 Annual Report - Final-2018 - Page 16

Finding the Right People CSF service fun fact: Our busiest shift (in terms of number of client encounters) was the Monday PM shift, followed closely by the Wednesday PM crew. Not too far behind in third place were the Friday PM interviewers. Total Volunteer Hours — 15,762 CSF volunteers have had another busy but productive year working to help some of Frankston’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged members. CSF continues to see a rise in the number of people coming through our doors, which is reflected in an increase in the number of client interactions this year. In terms of our volunteer contribution this year, we have a great mix of community members. Students and those wanting to gain work experience in the welfare sector and give back to the community contribute to a record number of expressions of interest (EOI’s) to join the CSF team, with 226 compared with 205 in the previous reporting period. It was decided after much consultation with our volunteers - beginning late 2017 - that our data collection needed to be updated and simplified. The workload for receptionists and the community workers needed to be reduced so their focus could be on supporting our clients. A review of two years of CSF data code reporting discovered that CSF accumulated 1100+ unique data codes yet registered less than 200 of these (9+ times) over the period. A review and revision of all CSF’s data codes, calling on CSF volunteers for input, was initiated, and a more streamlined process of data collection was introduced. CSF keeps accurate statistics for government funding requirements to inform our various stakeholders of issues and needs of the most disadvantaged and vulnerable people in Frankston. In changing the manner in which CSF retained some of our data, there was an increased workload and responsibility placed on the administration team. 16 It takes a community CSF has the good fortune to have an increase in retired women with business and administration backgrounds applying for volunteering roles. They have added enormous value and expertise to the CSF administration team, which needed to increase its numbers this year to keep up with the amount of data collection required due to the ever-increasing number of clients. Special thanks goes to all our volunteers for being understanding of this process, and we thank those who gave up their time to attend additional training and for attending our monthly case-discussion and guest speaker/ training groups. This year saw a continued increase of long term homeless clients presenting with a range of alcohol, drug and mental health issues, with many continuing to fall through gaps in mainstream services and having no real option for public treatment. Clients on Newstart Allowance increased, with many unable to find accommodation in a real estate market where a fortnight’s rent is often more than their payment amount, and they are forced to decide between sufficiently eating or paying rent. CSF volunteers spend time listening to often distressing stories of people let down by those they trusted and service systems they don’t know how to navigate, fit into or are eligible for. As a result, another focus for the operations team was putting further procedures in place to ensure the volunteers felt supported and were encouraged to debrief with staff and each other.