Safe Communities

The TSRA

Welcome to the TSRA’s Safe Communities Programme.

The Safe Communities Programme recognises that if people are not safe in their homes and communities it is difficult to implement economic development, healthy lifestyles, environmental management and other initiatives. The TSRA, through the Safe Communities Programme, undertakes a leadership and support role to influence policy and contribute to the development and monitoring of standards for the provision of community social services.

The Safe Communities Programme also contributes directly to some public and community safety and accessibility outcomes through funding and support for targeted initiatives, including infrastructure or equipment (e.g. transportation related), and others focussed on awareness raising and capacity building (e.g. in emergency response). The programme also contributes funding to proactive and reactive social service providers implementing critical programmes, which includes support for capacity building and training initiatives. Specific programme outcomes, benefits and performance measures are identified in the Torres Strait Development Plan 2014-2018.

Key Initiatives and Recent Activities

Non-Government Organisation Support

The TSRA Safe Communities Programme provides operational funding to locally-based community organisations to deliver social support services in the region. Key community organisations supported include Mura Kosker Sorority and Port Kennedy Association.

Port Kennedy Association

Port Kennedy Association (PKA) is a non-profit organisation established in 1987 to represent the views of the very diverse community of the Port Kennedy area. The organisation exists to enable residents of the Port Kennedy area to have an active role in providing services that would otherwise be unavailable in the area. The organisation delivers a broad range of community and social services and liaises with key government and non-government agencies to achieve its success.

After School Care

The Port Kennedy Association After-School Care Programme runs throughout the school term, offering low cost child care services to the community for children aged 6-12 years. The Programme supports a range of healthy/safe, social, cultural and educational activities including homework support, story-telling, traditional weaving and outdoor sports.

Vacation Care Programme

The Port Kennedy Association Vacation Care provides holiday care and programmes for children in the community aged 6-12 years. The Programme provides a range of indoor and outdoor developmental activities, as well as cooking and traditional arts and crafts facilitated by community artists and elders.

Port Kennedy Vacation Care is funded by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Flexi Respite

The Port Kennedy Association Disability Service provides a Learning and Life Skills Development and Flexi Respite service to adults and children who have disabilities and their families within the Torres Shire zone. The service is available to creatively support people with disability to access their community’s leisure and recreational activities, such as the Torres Shire Sports Complex, Library and supermarkets, and to participate in community events. The Port Kennedy Flexi Respite service offers a combination of own home and host family/peer support respite, and day outings.

Port Kennedy Flexi Respite is funded by the Queensland Government Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services.

Mura Kaimel Playgroup

The Mura Kaimel Playgroup caters for Indigenous and non-Indigenous children aged 0-5 years, providing a range of healthy/safe, social and culturally-based activities.

The Mura Kaimel Playgroup is funded by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Recognised Entity Service

The Recognised Entity Service provides cultural and family information and advice to the Queensland Government Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services in relation to child safety and concerns and placements.

The Recognised Entity Service is funded by the Queensland Government Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services.

Mura Kosker Sorority

Mura Kosker Sorority is a well-established regional women’s organisation situated in the Torres Strait providing a range of social services that meet the needs of women, children and their families. The organisation’s mission statement is to work towards uniting women of all ages in the Torres Strait, and to take steps to meet the social, emotional, educational, health, cultural, spiritual and welfare needs of women, children and dependents.

Domestic and Family Violence Counselling – Adult and Children Services / Children and Family Services

Mura Kosker Sorority provides services to the community for the safety of women in the community and their dependents in the form of:

  • an information/resource centre
  • support and assistance to those in crisis
  • community awareness/education programmes
  • counselling for victims and children who witness violence
  • legal aid

Older People Action Program and the Torres Strait Healthy Aging Programme

These programs aims to improve social participation in the community for residents aged 60 and older, by increasing their sense of safety and security and reducing fear of crime, and deliver a health-focused programme. The service is aimed at residents residing in the Kaiwalagal area (inner islands) of the Torres Strait.

Child and Family Support Programme

This program focuses on the provision of parental support and child wellbeing, and this is achieved through the delivery of mobile playgroup services and parent talk sessions. The mobile playgroup is aimed at children aged 0-5 years, ensuring the child’s development if progressing well. The parent talk sessions provide opportunity for parents to discuss parenting concerns with peer support group and trained professionals who offers advice and support.

The Domestic and Family Violence Counselling, Child and Family Support, Older People Action Program  and Torres Strait Healthy Aging programmes are funded by the Queensland Government Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services.

Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme is a component of a funding programme aimed at supporting the local transport infrastructure of regional, rural and remote communities throughout Queensland. Expenditure of TIDS funding in ATSI communities is the upgrade of transport infrastructure (roads, air and sea) to improve access to indigenous communities.

The TSRA’s Healthy Communities Programme administers funding on behalf of the Queensland Government for projects under the TIDS. These projects have significantly improved access to the remote communities of the Torres Strait, through improvements to transport and marine infrastructure.

Direct Grant Funding

The TSRA Safe Communities Programme offers grant funding for projects contributing to the Programme’s goals, including social services initiatives and initiatives contributing to safe and accessible communities. Recently funded activities include:

Torres Strait Maritime Safety Program Boatsafe Project – Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA)

Aims to deliver boatsafe training in the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area to improve and promote boating safety in the region. The project is carried out in partnership with Maritime Safety Queensland and Queensland Police Service.

High Frequency (HF) Radios Project – Torres Strait Island Regional Council and Torres Shire Council

To purchase and install HF radios in Torres Strait communities to ensure a more reliable and effective communications system is available in the region during disaster events. It also contributes to the Torres Strait Disaster Management Plan.

Against Domestic and Family Violence Conference – Social Justice Interagency Services (auspiced by Lena Passi Women’s Shelter)

To host a Torres Strait Domestic and Family Violence (D&FV) conference, to provide community education sessions and recruit community champions for each community who will recognise, respond and refer domestic and family violence incidents; and together with key stakeholders develop community safety plans and a Domestic & Family Violence strategy for the Torres Strait.

Men’s Group Establishment Project – Kerkar Bau Men’s Group

To host a workshop for men from various island communities to participate in consultation on the formation of their business and strategic plan, which will educate, equip and empower Zenadth Kes males and families to have strong cultural, spiritual and economic well-being.

Offenders Support Program –Thursday Island Justice Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal Corporation (TI Justice Group)

To cover the travel costs of the TI Justice Group to accompany the Magistrates Court Circuit to outer island communities and NPA area to assist and support Community Justice Groups and clients.