We have been working hard with our partners and stakeholders to get feedback and to document and share our key findings and achievements. One strategic priority project evaluation report and six community level evaluation reports are being finalised. These reports will highlight some of the different ways that we have been supporting journeys towards higher education for people in remote Indigenous communities. There will also be a final WCE evaluation report published, which will include overall findings for the initiative.
Our successes are numerous and include the articulation of remote Indigenous community perspectives of higher education and what a good community engagement process looks like from this viewpoint. As a result of the process we took, we have seen the beginnings of some foundational steps towards improving access that are community driven. Our ‘whole of community’ approach led us to focus on developing inter-organisational partnerships and governance within the communities in which we work. Just some examples of positive outcomes achieved include cultural awareness training for school staff that has led to stronger Indigenous and non-Indigenous staff relationships; family mediation leading to conflict resolution and increased student attendance; and increases of local Indigenous community members on community school councils. There has been an increase in community research ownership and capacity and the building of youth leadership skills and confidence. There have also been a number of small but important influences on organisational systems and process that WCE has facilitated.
The Final WCE Evaluation Report will be a broad summary of our achievements and learnings across the WCE initiative and will include a detailed account of what worked well and what did not. The WCE initiative was a new approach in the remote NT community context and we will be able to share with you what we have learnt about what does and does not work well in the implementation of a project like this.
Written by Cat Street