Together Now Interagency Forum

Next Meeting: Wednesday, November 30, 2016 2:00 to 3:30 PM

Location: Albert Scott Community Centre (Multi-purpose Room), 1264 Athol St.

There are many diverse community-based and citywide agencies and programs that serve the residents of North Central Regina.  These agencies provide an array of programs and services that aim to improve the quality of individual, family, and community life of neighbourhood residents.  These organizations share common interests such as the effectiveness of their program efforts and the long-term development of the North Central community.

For several years North Central serving agencies have recognized the inherent value of sharing information, supporting one another, both personally and professionally, and are in cooperation on projects and events.  The “Together Now” interagency network grew out of the need to work together.  The network is a continuous and organized effort to create synergies amongst many diverse players in human services.  The network exists to maximize community benefits and strengthen community.  Network participants believe good things happen when people think, talk, organize, and act together to share ideas and efforts.

The Together Now Interagency Network aims to gather and connect many community-based agencies and government organizations.  Network gatherings and committees also welcome the participation of concerned citizens. The Network is built upon the principles of inclusive community development, voluntary participation in networking, sharing of leadership responsibilities (when required), and encouraging cooperative and collaborative social action.

Purpose

The “Together Now” Network exists to provide and enhance opportunities for the following:

Information-Sharing – To facilitate information sharing amongst agency managers and staff about current and planned community programs, events, services, initiatives, and other important developments

Support – To foster mutual support amongst service providers and concerned citizens regarding community development, agency management, and service delivery and improvement

Cooperation – To encourage collaboration & co-operation, both formally and informally, amongst network agencies

Advocacy – To amplify “community voice” on issues of concern to agencies and community residents by creating a community forum for identifying problems, sharing ideas, learning together, and seeking solutions

Committees

Network participants may choose to form committees amongst like-minded agency representatives and citizens to address particular issues or areas of concern cooperatively. Examples of committee topics might include community and family matters like food security, transportation, housing, or perhaps advocating on issues like multi-year program funding to agencies.

The Network itself does not exist to pursue any particular projects or offer community programs. While the network strongly supports committee formation, it must be well understood that committee work is done entirely under the auspices of those agencies and individuals who decide to work together on a particular issue. The Network warmly welcomes regular Committee updates and reports about activities, projects, programs, events, and social action from committee members at gatherings, and/or by electronic mail.

The Network doesn’t seek to speak with one voice; participation in gatherings and email contact lists does not imply endorsement of any or all committee works. Rather the Network seeks primarily to facilitate communication, connection, and cooperation amongst diverse agencies and organizations.

Objective

Some objectives that the Together Now interagency network aim to achieve are as follows:

  • To improve interagency communications through quarterly gatherings, the distribution of program brochures and posters, guest presentations, round-table verbal reports, and general discussions
  • To enhance communication and support for one another in thinking, planning, and acting in areas of common concern, including:
    1. raising community awareness about agency programs, services, and events
    2. increasing participation of residents in programs, services, and events
    3. seeking to avoid duplication when need is adequately met, and to use resources effectively
    4. understanding and responding to community need by seeking to fill gaps in programming
    5. developing and taking a coordinated approach to service and program delivery
  • To provide opportunities and occasions for agency managers and workers, government officials, and community residents to learn from each other and enhance cross-cultural understanding, community development, effective and innovative community service, and other areas of common interest.
  • To provide forum and opportunities for like-minded agencies and individuals to connect and take action on current community issues and concerns. Participants may choose to form committees to respond with projects and other activities.

 Participation and Networking

Agency participation in the “Together Now” Network is voluntary. This is a fundamental principle of the Network that is a notable strength. Participation is open & inclusive to anyone who wishes to join in gatherings, committees, projects or events. It is assumed that participant agencies have a strong interest in serving North Central individuals, families and groups.

Possible participants may include directors, managers, and staff of agencies that serve in North Central Regina, as well as concerned citizens. Participation by the following community-based and city-wide agencies is welcome:

  • Community Schools and School Boards
  • Community-Based Organizations
  • Community Associations
  • Citizen groups
  • Municipal Government departments and agencies
  • Provincial Government departments and agencies
  • Federal Government departments and agencies
  • The Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region
  • Faith Communities
  • Businesses
  • And other concerned human service agencies

Participating agencies agree to provide the current names of agency managers and staff, including the agency address and email contacts, for inclusion in a widely circulated network contact list. Inclusion on the Network contact list implies support for and participation in the Network gatherings, and nothing more.

Interagency Gatherings

The Network will hold Interagency Gatherings up to 4 or more times per year; at least quarterly.  The gatherings are ad-hoc and inclusive in nature.  That is, whoever is able to attend is welcome to attend.  There will be chance to share current information and to hear a guest presentation about particular community and human service topics.  Participants are encouraged to bring and distribute printed information to foster strategic partnerships and cooperation.