Prospective Projects

The CSI is excited to announce several prospective projects. These projects provide potential partnering and sponsorship opportunities for interested individuals, organisations, government and corporate entities to engage with meaningful programs and initiatives in an evaluative way.

To discuss how you and your organisation can contribute to these projects and become a partner of the Fairbridge Centre for Social Innovation, please contact the CSI Manager Dr Angela Carr on  0401 386 375. We also welcome a visit to the centre anytime you are in the Peel region.

Current Prospective Projects

Economic Analysis of the Impact of the Fairbridge Bindjareb Program

Project Overview

Fairbridge Centre for Social Innovation is seeking partners to support an economic analysis of the impact of the Fairbridge Bindjareb Program (FBP). The FBP program supports young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men to transition from criminal justice detention to sustainable employment and positive life change.

The FBP commenced in 2010 and is a collaboration between Bis Industries, Fairbridge Western Australia Inc. (Fairbridge) and the Government of Western Australia Department of Corrective Services (DCS). Over a six month period, the program provides participants with certified training in surface extraction, literacy and numeracy tutoring, mentoring, case management and lifestyle development workshops (including goal setting, money management, legal advice, emotional intelligence, nutritional health, men’s health, communication and conflict management, and driver training), family liaison and support, cultural leadership development, and industry culture training and immersion. Participants who complete the program and gain certification are guaranteed employment in the mining sector. The program was piloted between November 2010 and March 2012, and has been running successfully for four years. It now has potential to expand to reach a larger number of young men.

Value for Money Analysis

The proposed economic analysis will complement an ongoing evaluation by enabling an estimation of the cost savings to government and society of identified FBP outcomes. These may include:

  • Reduced criminal recidivism and associated court and corrections costs (eg. nights in detention, court and justice administration costs, victim and offender rehabilitation costs).
  • Increased employment and associated benefits (eg. increased business productivity, reduced unemployment pensions paid, reduced housing, homelessness and other service subsidies).
  • Improved health and wellbeing and associated benefits (eg. reduced nights in hospital and associated medical costs, reduced use of social services and health related welfare payments, increased business productivity).
  • Improved family functioning (eg. reduced out of home care and child protection costs, reduced family services costs).

To ensure the analysis is valid, it will need to account for a number of other factors that could also influence these outcomes (eg. prior offence behaviour and common offence trajectories, prior employment history, existing health conditions, etc) and reference the findings against a relevant counter-factual. Anticipated Project Benefits Economic analysis of FBP impact will provide a number of benefits, including:

  • Robust assessment of the financial return of the FBP (and similar programs) to inform government, corporate and community decision making.
  • Justification of current investment in offender rehabilitation and employment programs as a means of improving community safety and security (if social and economic outcomes are achieved).
  • Generation of increased interest in the development of programs such as the FBP (if social and economic outcomes are achieved).
  • Valid and reliable information for use in structuring and promoting social finance options such as social benefit bonds (a form of investment whereby private investors contribute to program costs in return for government dividends paid on the basis of public cost savings).
  • Potential for current and prospective corporate partners (e.g. Bis Industries and associates) to advocate for government tax incentives to support their contribution to program success.
  • Reduction in government expenditure in relevant areas if social finance options are validated and implemented.
  • Opportunities for public funds reallocation if social finance options are validated and implemented.
  • Opportunities for tax reduction or rebate if social finance options are validated and implemented.

Prospective Partner/ Sponsor Contribution

The Fairbridge CSI is inviting partners to take advantage of this unique opportunity and join us in our work, using research and evaluation evidence to support long term positive change in young people’s lives. We are seeking partners to provide contributions in the form of financial investment, expertise in modelling the economic impact of community projects aimed at reducing recidivism and/or other forms of in-kind support.

Vocational Education and Training Program Evaluation

Project Overview

Fairbridge Centre for Social Innovation (CSI) is seeking partners to support an evaluation of the Fairbridge Western Australia Inc. (Fairbridge) community based Vocational Education and Training (VET) programs. These programs aim to facilitate social and educational re-engagement of youth at risk (including those who have withdrawn from school) through supported training and apprenticeship experiences (in Building & Construction, Conservation & Land Management, Outdoor Recreation, Hospitality, Business Administration and Painting & Decorating).

Education and training are essential in preparing young people for employment. At Fairbridge, youth VET programs are provided as part of an integrated, wrap-around process that includes a range of services designed to ensure that participants also have the skills to address emerging issues and sustain employment over the longer term. These services include literacy and numeracy tutoring, mentoring, life and social skills development, case management, and supported accommodation.

Vocational Educational Training Program Evaluation Evaluation of Fairbridge’s VET programs will:

  • Track youth progress through the VET programs and identify predictors of program completion.
  • Measure the extent to which program participants achieve sustainable education and employment outcomes.
  • Identify any other social and economic outcomes associated with program participation.
  • Identify the mechanisms through which outcomes are achieved, including the activities and delivery processes that yield the greatest social and economic return on program investment.
  • Consider individual differences in youth outcomes and the way that different program processes and activities contribute to these.

To achieve these goals, the evaluation will need to measure outcomes across multiple VET programs, track outcomes over a period of at least two years (ideally five), account for factors outside of the program that could also have influenced outcomes (eg. participation in other programs, family support, prior educational and vocational attainment, participant health etc), and reference the findings against a relevant counter-factual.

Anticipated Project Benefits

  • Evaluation of Fairbridge’s VET programs will provide a number of benefits, including:
  • Robust assessment of the social and economic impact (including industry productivity) of Fairbridge’s VET programs to inform government, corporate and community decision making.
  • Information about which program processes and activities contribute most to sustainable youth outcomes for use in program planning.
  • Justification of current investment in Fairbridge’s VET programs as a means of improving youth outcomes and employment (if social and economic outcomes are achieved).
  • Generation of increased interest in the development of programs such as Fairbridge’s VET programs (if social and economic outcomes are achieved).
  • Valid and reliable information for use in structuring program partnership and funding agreements.

Information that can be used to develop a detailed economic model of the extent to which Fairbridge’s VET programs reduce longer term public expenses (eg. unemployment pensions, social service subsidies, health costs) – for use in structuring and promoting social finance options such as social benefit bonds (a form of investment whereby private investors contribute to program costs in return for government dividends paid on the basis of public cost savings).

Prospective Partner/ Sponsor Contribution

The Fairbridge CSI is inviting partners to take advantage of this unique opportunity and join us in our work, using research and evaluation evidence to support long term positive change in young people’s lives. We are seeking partners to provide contributions in the form of financial investment, evaluation expertise and resources, and/or other forms of in-kind support.

Evaluation of the Fairbridge Approach to Wrap Around Support

Project Overview

Fairbridge Centre for Social Innovation (CSI) is seeking partners to support an evaluation of the Fairbridge Western Australia Inc. (Fairbridge) approach to wrap around support for young people. That approach aims to holistically support all aspects of each young person’s development by integrating social, cultural, educational (including literacy and numeracy tutoring), vocational training, employment, financial, family support, health, wellbeing and housing services in one place, and tailoring service delivery to meet each individual’s needs.

Fairbridge’s integrated approach to service delivery recognises the complexity of the challenges that many of its young clients face. These challenges include low educational attainment, drug dependencies, socio-economic disadvantage, criminal justice involvement, social isolation, family conflict and abuse, physical and emotional health issues, cognitive impairment and disability, and developmental delays. There is now significant research evidence to show that although a number of interventions may be effective in increasing positive outcomes for young people experiencing these challenges, no single intervention will benefit all young people and the most vulnerable young people are usually least likely to access the assistance they need.

Integrated, wrap-around service provision models, such as the approach used by Fairbridge, aim to overcome those barriers to service access by attracting young people through a range of universal, non-stigmatised programs and activities (e.g. registered Vocational Education and Training programs, apprenticeships, adventure camps, leadership programs). Once young people enter the service, they are then provided with more targeted support to meet their individual needs (e.g. mentoring, case management, lifestyle development interventions, health services, legal services, financial management services, cultural development activities, accommodation support, and literacy and numeracy tutoring).

To facilitate effective wrap around support for all young people who access Fairbridge, the organisation works in close partnership with a range of other community, government and corporate agencies.

Wrap-around Support Evaluation

  • Evaluation of Fairbridge’s approach to wrap-around support will:
    Identify the extent to which the approach improves service access by vulnerable young people.
  • Track each young person’s use of Fairbridge programs and identify the extent to which they are provided services that specifically meet their needs.
  • Measure the extent to which Fairbridge service access increases positive social and economic outcomes for young people.
  • Measure the extent to which those outcomes are sustained over the longer term.
  • Identify the mechanisms through which outcomes are achieved, including the activities and delivery processes that yield the greatest social and economic return on investment.
  • Consider individual differences in client outcomes and the way that different program processes and activities contribute to these.

To achieve these goals, the evaluation will need to measure outcomes of multiple young people, track effects over a period of at least two years (ideally five), account for factors outside of Fairbridge that could also have influenced results (e.g. participation in other programs, family support, prior educational and vocational attainment, participant health etc.), and reference the findings against a relevant counter-factual.

Anticipated Project Benefits

Evaluation of Fairbridge’s approach to wrap-around support will provide a number of benefits, including:

  • Robust assessment of the social and economic impact of the approach that can be used to inform government, corporate and community decision making and advocacy.
  • Information about which service delivery processes and activities contribute most to sustainable youth outcomes, for use in program planning.
  • Generation of increased interest in the development of wrap-around support services in other areas (if social and economic outcomes are achieved).
  • Information on the conditions needed to facilitate and sustain wrap-around support services that can be used when planning their implementation in other areas.
  • Valid and reliable information for use in structuring wrap-around support service partnership and funding agreements.
  • Information that can be used to develop a detailed economic model of the extent to which Fairbridge’s approach to wrap-around support reduces longer term public expenses (e.g. unemployment pensions, social service subsidies, health costs, criminal justice costs, housing costs) – for use in structuring and promoting social finance options such as social benefit bonds (a form of investment whereby private investors contribute to program costs in return for government dividends paid on the basis of public cost savings).

Prospective Partner/Sponsor Contribution

The Fairbridge CSI is inviting partners to take advantage of this unique opportunity and join us in our work, using research and evaluation evidence to support long term positive change in young people’s lives. We are seeking partners to provide contributions in the form of financial investment, evaluation expertise and other in-kind support.