Annual Report – Year 2016

Maria Brown-Shepherd, President of the Ethnic Council of Shepparton and District Inc., Regd. No A6321, delivers the Annual Report for year 2016 on 29 September, 2016.

I have represented the Ethnic Council as a member of the Advisory Committee at Harmony Village, participate in Goulburn Valley Health’s Cultural Diversity Committee which oversights the Health Service Cultural Diversity Plan and advises the Health Board on multicultural issues. I am a member of the Federation of Ethnic Communities Council of Australia’s Rural and Regional Advisory Committee which meets via teleconference on a monthly basis and annually in person. I also sit on FECCA’s Healthy Aging Reference Group and I look forward to representing the views of our older multicultural communities in this important forum.

The past twelve months have been again a very busy year with a diverse range of activities being undertaken by the Ethnic Council in the community and in partnership with other organisations. The range of Ethnic Council activities is increasing and requires your Board to be well informed on the functions and the financial probity of service delivery. The Board continues to receive monthly financial and activity reports from Management to oversight the Councils Financial and overall performance to ensure our financial viability and standard of service delivery.

I acknowledge the role of Board members for their regular contribution to the effective operation of the Board and look forward to a similar level of involvement in the coming year.

The Board maintains an excellent working relationship within the Board and externally with the Manager Chris Hazelman and his staff who are responsive to Board needs and provide information and support as requested. Financial security has been achieved over the next two years through successfully gaining grants funding that will increase our capacity and also allow us to focus on broader issues as determined by each grant agreement.

I reported last year that appropriate services for older multicultural people in Greater Shepparton will be an increasing focus for the Ethnic Council and the Strategic Partnerships Grant funding recently announced may enable us to undertake some work in this area. It is interesting that the bodies grant new funds are increasingly insisting on partnerships and networking in the delivery of grant outcomes and each of the primary funds obtained last year require a consortium approach and evidence of collaboration between agencies and community organisations.

I represented the Ethnic Council at the annual GOTAFE graduation ceremony and presented the award sponsored by the Ethnic Council and have attempted to attend the various function to which I am invited on behalf of the Ethnic Council. One event which I particularly enjoyed was being invited by Victoria Police to actively participate in the formal opening of their wall murals fronting Welsford Street.

It was an opportunity that reflected the status of the Ethnic Council and our acceptance as a major service provider in Settlement Services.

The Ethnic Council has the capacity to continue to expand its role and renewed funding levels and funding security enable us to plan more broadly to develop a range of services and activities across more communities and age groups.

Our end of year financial position is welcomed and I note that the Auditors Stubbs Wallace have undertaken their first audit of the Ethnic Council.

I encourage all members to maintain the objectives of the Council and to remain a viable organisation providing advocacy and specific services for multicultural people.

Maria Brown-Shepherd,
Ethnic Council of Shepparton and District Inc., Regd. No A6321
29 September, 2016






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