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Meeting the needs of rural families in times of crisis
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Sandra Paton, C Cuckson
In 2003 qualitative research investigated the role of Rural Family Support Worker (RFSW) within Central Queensland. Catalyst for the study was the perception that Departmental funding criteria were not keeping abreast of community needs and expectations. The findings from this project offer an ideal opportunity to review the funder/ purchaser/provider model in practice in Australia. Key issues arising are: the appropriateness of this model for service delivery in rural communities and its effectiveness in meeting the expectations of all the stakeholders connected to the Rural Family Support (RFS) system. This paper examines views espoused in the literature and perspectives put forward by a range of Human Service Sector Professionals, Departmental staff, clients of the RFSWs and the RFSWs themselves. It identifies areas where a more proactive and collaborative approach between contractual partners will ensure the RFS program can better meet the needs of rural families in times of crisis.