connectwest is a volunteer-led, member-based network connecting, promoting and supporting community leaders across Melbourne’s western suburbs (“West”).
The West includes Brimbank, Hobsons Bay, Maribyrnong, Melton, Moonee Valley and Wyndham. We welcome anyone who lives, works, studies, recreates or volunteers across these areas.
Established in 2017, connectwest aims to support community leaders from various backgrounds, experience, and special interest areas, by addressing identified gaps in current capability and capacity, networking and information sharing. connectwest delivers a range of activities for its members, building their capability and working with and for them to increase connection, collaboration and shared learnings:
- Advocacy – providing a collective voice for community leaders in Melbourne’s West
- Leadership development – Designing and delivering activities and events that build capability in
community leadership and add value to existing community leadership development programs
- Networking opportunities – creating collaborative environments for sharing of the sector
information, leveraging collective strengths and maximising community value
“We want to foster a common ground and be a platform for groups of people get together and add value to each other”
connectwest recognises the need to set a bold strategic agenda that communicate a clear purpose and position in the community, as well as the priorities they will focus on to deliver community value in a robust and financially sustainable way.
We wish to continue extending our influence and add value through building connection, collaboration and sharing learnings among community leaders in Melbourne’s West.
Our strategic plan was developed through internal and external engagement. Including the connectwest committee and over 15 representatives (from across local government and community organisations in the West).
Our strategic planning process highlighted the strengths that connectwest want to continue to build on, as well as the areas for future focus:
- Building influence in the sector;
- Delivering value for key community leaders and/or groups in the West, and
- Creating a long-term future for the organisation.
Ultimately, our strategy is about connectwest being relevant; having clear priorities, and a plan for how it will deliver value as a network in a sustainable and purposeful way.
connectwest has operate since 2017.
In early 2017 a “Community Leadership Forum” was run in Melbourne West to unpack a number of concerns in the community and social services of the area.
The forum explored what would add value and strengthen work in the sector. The gaps identified during this forum included:
- Regional networking, opportunities for community leaders and organisations
- Strengthening post-leadership program pathways
- Support for community leaders in their ongoing leadership and learnings
A group was established with the aim to fill the gaps identified by community leaders and volunteer groups a part of this forum.
- An expression of interest went out to find those leaders in the community interested in making change
- A joint group of representatives that work in the community leadership space started meeting…
- connectwest was formed!