The state’s 70 Community Drug Action Teams (CDATs) will be supported from January 2021 by a new consortium of not-for-profit organisations expert in treating and supporting individuals, families and communities dealing with alcohol and other drug problems and mental health issues.
Funded by NSW Health for a three-year term, the Community, Engagement and Connection Consortium (CECC) is headed by Odyssey House NSW includes The Buttery in Northern NSW, Karralika Programs in the ACT and Bila Muuji Aboriginal Corporation Health Services Incorporated in Western and Far Western NSW.
Run by local volunteers, CDATs have developed and undertaken thousands of community-based activities since 1999 to tackle the challenges posed by alcohol and other drugs in their areas.
Odyssey House NSW CEO, Julie Babineau, said the consortium is delighted with the opportunity to work with CDAT’s dedicated members to help reduce the impact of alcohol and drug use and develop resilience in their communities.
“Odyssey House and our partners will bring together our collective local expertise, knowledge and connections to meet CDAT’s objectives and build strong partnerships, identify alcohol and other drug-related issues, develop tailored solutions, and deliver local initiatives,” Ms Babineau said.
“We will also take advice from an advisory panel with delegates from health, police, justice, research, education and consumer rights, Local Health Districts and Primary Health Networks.”
The advantages of this collaborative approach are echoed by The Buttery CEO, Leone Crayden.
“The Buttery is excited to be working with the consortium partners to deliver the CDAT Program. Together we will enhance opportunities for meaningful engagement with communities, agencies and Local Health Districts,” Ms Crayden said.
Karralika Programs CEO Sharon Tuffin said her organisation can’t wait to get started.
“This new approach to specialist, local grass roots services, supporting CDATs across NSW, will not only build on the legacy work of the Alcohol and Drug Foundation, but will also amplify the program’s positive impact into the future,” Ms Tuffin said.
Bila Muuji Aboriginal Corporation Health Services Inc. has wide-ranging experience in working with remote and outback communities and the health challenges they face.
“This new partnership will create a range of support within the Bila Muuji footprint which will be of great benefit to communities,” said spokesperson Pam Renata.
“Bila Muuji Aboriginal Health Service Inc. are looking forward to working closely with our consortia partners delivering the CDAT program in our region.”