Randwick 100 Forum and Community Engagement Strategy: giving local residents a voice

Randwick City Council

Randwick 100 Forum and Community Engagement Strategy

Cred Consulting was engaged by Randwick City Council to design, deliver and report on an inaugural ‘Randwick 100’ forum and a Councillor workshop and to prepare a new Community Engagement Strategy.

The ‘Randwick 100’ forum was one part of a suite of engagement activities being undertaken by Council to inform the development of their new Community Engagement Strategy.

The purpose of the forum was to understand from the community when, how, and why they wish to be consulted in the future.

Director, Jen Guice, facilitated discussions around how Council can best inform and consult with its diverse community. Image courtesy of Randwick City Council

How we did it

Image courtesy of Randwick City Council

Cred worked with Taverner Research Group to recruit 100 demographically representative members of the community to participate in the forum, bringing together a diverse range of community members for a positive, interactive and insightful discussion about their engagement, communication and information needs, as well as their preferences and expectations.

Facilitated by Cred Consulting Director, Jen Guice, the forum delivered a range of activities, including whole group discussions, live polling and small group work using bespoke self-guided activity sheets.

Conversations about online versus face-to-face engagement, notifying owners, tenants, or both, and identifying the community’s motivations and barriers to participating in engagement with Council were both interesting and insightful – particularly since the way we communicate has changed so much since the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It certainly reinforced to me how important it is to inform people and to provide meaningful opportunities for input into government decisions,” said Joshua Hay, Council’s Manager Communications on seeing 100 people in the same room, all talking about community engagement. “When done well, it really unites the community.”

Feedback from the community who attended the forum was resoundingly positive.

It’s great to work with a team like Cred, who understand local government and the challenges that Councillors have, and can deal with it respectfully and productively."

Joshua Hay, Manager Communications - Randwick City Council

The outcome

Cred analysed findings from the forum and used those along with findings from Council’s online survey to prepare a draft best-practice Community Engagement Strategy, which outlines how and when Council will engage with its community on planning, Council projects and other matters of relevance to its local community.

Cred also designed and delivered an online interactive Councillor workshop, to test aspects of the draft Community Engagement Strategy.

Council adopted their new Community Engagement Strategy at their 22 November 2022 Council meeting, for implementation by the end of year. It has a strong focus on early community participation and inclusion – actively seeking views that are representative of the community, including groups who are often under-represented in decision making.

Related reading: Giving local residents a voice 

Image courtesy of Randwick City Council

Image courtesy of Randwick City Council