IF YOU KNOW BOURKE, YOU KNOW AUSTRALIA
Henry Lawson’s famous quote lingered in my mind after my last trip to Bourke. We were working with the inspirational Maranguka Community Hub backbone team and Justice Reinvest initiative to automate the sharing of data from thirteen contributors into Maranguka’s private data collection on Seer.
The Maranguka Initiative is the first major justice reinvestment project and largest data-driven community project in Australia.
Lawson’s quote speaks to the nature of telling the big story through the glimpse of the small. When you start to see the small, and what is possible, a picture of the whole begins to take shape.
Data sharing at the community level is exploding. Bourke and Maranguka led the way, and now places all around Australia are building their own data collaboratives and we’re enabling the automation of this process.
Imagine you could automatically contribute your organisation’s data to solve a local social problem and this contribution would build a community asset for all to work with? That’s the small story of Bourke expanded into Mildura, East Gippsland, Shepparton and many, many more.
Maranguka, meaning ‘caring for others’ in Ngemba language, is built around Indigenous self-governance in partnership with relevant Government and Non-Government agencies. It is a true community-led model where Aboriginal leaders and the community have created a service and accountability framework for Bourke. Crime and incarceration levels are dropping and education, opportunities and outcomes are improving for young people.
The Maranguka Private Data Collection comprises 13 data contributions from Government agencies, schools and not-for-profits and aims to help the backbone team to make data-driven decisions for interventions and inform the working groups on progress. It’s also used for a data to policy conversations across Government. Seer’s work is focused on automating the sharing (so there’s no manual processing) and simplifiying access to the data collection to make it useable to people of all skillsets.
It is also a testament to the power of data sharing and demonstrates how we all can benefit when community leaders are able to harness greater insight with data.