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Monday, October 26, 2020
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Video Highlights – Seeka Te Puke Christmas Float Parade 2019

Highlights from the day. Lovely to see community members and organisations come together with healthy collaboration across...

Housing Stress in Te Puke

This document has been produced by the Housing Working Group, a group formed out of the...

Te Puke COLAB Expo 2019

An event this weekend will give people the chance to nd out what groups, services and...
COLAB was established late in 2017 to better enable its members to work collectively to support Te Puke and surrounding areas.

Our Story

The Western Bay of Plenty has a proud social service heart.

At its core, in the western Bay of Plenty approximately 240 organisations work daily to improve the wellbeing of individuals, families and our society. Many of our fellow New Zealanders struggle with isolation, poverty, mental illness, addiction, housing, food insecurity amongst other issues and each one of the good folks working in the social service sector are dedicated to the task of making life that much easier and better for everyone.

The Western Bay of Plenty has a rapidly expanding population and as a result, the social service sector is experiencing an ever-increasing demand for its services.

A range of issues impact on social services including difficulties associated with a degree of fragmentation within the social services sector, challenging communication and not least, an uncertain and difficult funding environment.

Over the years, those at the heart of social service delivery have expressed a feeling of being undervalued, often stymied in being able to provide all that they would wish to their communities because of there being few connected voices in what seems a burgeoning environment.

A major challenge to the delivery of social services in the Western Bay of Plenty has been finding a method by which the sector can connect, can work together, can collaborate with appropriate resources designed to aid in the delivery of smarter, more efficient services.

In response to these challenges within the social service sector, 2014 saw the inception and registered charity status of The Social Sector Innovation WBOP Charitable Trust, or the slightly sexier title ‘SociaLink’. The aim of this new organisation was to provide a structure for research, innovation, collaboration, information, networking and advocacy for all involved in the sector throughout The Western Bay.

Today, SociaLink operates with the aim of “A thriving social and community sector improving Western Bay of Plenty communities”.

The idea is that only in providing an environment where social service is valued by all, where social services are fully connected and that organisations are able to take full advantage of every collaborative effort, can we as a people create a society where all are cherished and respected. Okay, so now we’ve got the big stuff out of the way, what does SociaLink do?

To achieve SociaLink’s aims, three strategic themes were identified:

  • Build a thriving and connected social service sector
  • Empower that sector to success
  • Serve the sector to ensure the delivery of the first two.

SociaLink achieves its vision in a number of ways.

  • SociaLink undertakes a range of researh to better understand the local social sector and highlight social issues t enable discussion by the sector and to advocate to funders and stakeholders:
  • Organisation of training programmes, forums and educational workshops
  • Regular communication including an informative newsletter intended to inform of relevant training, new policy and legislation
  • SociaLink is to manage daily operations at The Kollective, The Western Bay’s new co-working community service hub where collaborative effort and connectivity are key to success.
  • In a combined effort with other strategic WBOP organisations SociaLink seeks to ‘map’ the social sector to better understand the organisations and services that comprise the social services sector in the Western Bay of Plenty. This involves meeting and collecting information from social services, of which it is estimated there are 221 social services.
  • Assist social sector providers to work together on social issues e.g. organise and facilitate meetings, apply for funding, act as a fund holder etc.
  • Assist social sector agencies to work together e.g. networksc share information, partnerships etc.
  • Work with the sector to advocate on issues of relevance to them e.g. prepare submissions etc
  • Work with Māori providers to see how SociaLink can best add value to their mahi.

Street Prints Mauao Youth Mentoring Program

Our Te Puke Region Taiohi/youth have the opportunity to be involved in Tauranga's third Street Prints...

WBOPDC Summer information 2019/20

Summer information 2019/20 On this Page Library and Service Centre opening hoursKerbside Rubbish and Recycling...

Throwdown – National Dance Battle in Te Puke

The best of NZ’s street dancers are battling it out for supremacy in Te Puke today. The much-anticipated Te Puke Throwdown – National Dance Battle...

Dance battle to take place in Te Puke

A national dance battle dubbed as the Te Puke Throwdown is set to take place on May 18. The free all ages competition is being...
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