Kewdale: Clan WA’s home visiting program axed

Kewdale: Clan WA’s home visiting program axed

CLAN WA has closed its parents and families home visiting service after 27 years.

The service stopped on March 24 after the Kewdale-based organisation’s tender application to the Department for Local Government and Communities was rejected.

Clan WA chief executive Mitchell Messer said the parenting services tenders, across each part of the metropolitan area and regions, were looking to streamline services and have less individual support.

“We don’t know what the impact will be initially,” Mr Messer said.

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“I think it’ll be more difficult for people who feel isolated and disconnected from the community. They may find it difficult to get to groups and workshops and participate in those activities.

“Our services often worked with these individuals prior to them participating in community courses. It’s about building their confidence and resilience and I think it will be more difficult for people to get access to those services.”

Clan WA’s Mandurah office was closed after the funding cut. Seven staff positions have been cut and the remaining staff have reduced their hours.

The home visiting program represented about 60 per cent of Clan WA’s funding.

Mr Messer said it was a pity the service was not able to continue until at least the end of the financial year.

“It’s a shame there wasn’t a period of handover. The new services will have difficulty hitting the ground at 100 per cent on day one,” he said.

“I think families miss out for a period of time while services are settled, instead of allowing those new services to ramp up while we ramp down. It’s a shame for the community.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Local Government and Communities said funding had been provided to Ngala Community Services, the Shire of Mundaring, Communicare and Meerilinga Young Children’s Services across the metropolitan area, along with Ngala’s expanded parenting helpline.

A Centre for Parenting Excellence has also been established.

“This new model is designed to give providers more long-term certainty, with new contracts in place for five years,” the spokesperson said.