Centre for Health and Social Research

CAMP is open!

CAMP out at CHaSR!

We have established the CHaSR Associate Mentor Program (CAMP), an exciting program designed to facilitate opportunities for growth and partnership between local community organisations and CHaSR. Basically, it’s a program where our researchers can provide mentorship and a few basics (eg: a desk, computer, phone etc) for staff from community based organisations who may want or need to integrate better research principles and practices into their work.

CAMP provides a platform for collaboration and a fusion of different skills, knowledge and experiences in a mutually beneficial way. It will offer CAMPers an interesting opportunity to learn in an academic research environment, acquire knowledge and methods and apply these new skills to their work in the ‘real world’. For CHaSR researchers, it provides further community engagement opportunities and an understanding of the context in which their research approaches can be used in a real world setting.

At the end of the process, CAMPers will become CHaSR Associates provided with access to our monthly research seminars, quarterly newsletters and other professional network opportunities.

  • What Happens at CAMP?

    The nature of CAMP parameters is flexible, and tailored to suit the needs of each organisation. CAMPers will be supported and mentored by a CHaSR researcher who has expertise relevant to their project. CAMPers can stay at CHaSR for a duration that is mutually agreeable and relevant to the project. It may be 1 day a week for 6 weeks to 6 months or even a short intensive period. Projects can be skills based, such as how to conduct a literature search or write a basic report; or they could be a specifically identified area of need, such as how to evaluate an existing program or how to reach a hard-to-reach target group. CHaSR has CAMP sites in Melbourne, VIC and Wollongong, NSW.

  • What are some examples of CAMP projects?

    We have worked with a local community development worker who combines her community work with circus, drama and other performing arts with children and young people. Working with a mentor, she learned how to better document and evaluate her processes and programs in order to communicate their effectiveness and improve her grant writing capacity.

    We have worked with local drug and alcohol teams to produce advocacy brochures and flyers relating to alcohol advertising targeting children and how to make a complaint.

  • Bringing ACU’s Community Engagement Mission to Life

    Community engagement is the process through which Australian Catholic University (ACU) brings the capabilities of its staff to work collaboratively with community groups and organisations to achieve mutually agreed goals that build capacity, improve wellbeing, and produce just and sustainable outcomes in the interests of people, communities, and the University.

    The University values community engagement as a key means of advancing its Mission in serving the common good and enhancing the dignity and wellbeing of people and communities. It is recognised as being integral to the teaching, learning and research agendas.

    Community Engagement provides a way to affirm relationships and partnerships between ACU and community organisations, institutions and corporations through:
    – Trust fostered through shared vision, goals and values
    – Capacity building, new knowledge, new opportunities
    – Research creating new knowledge
    – Openness to learning and change
    – Developing, maintaining and consolidating partnerships
    – Developing new benchmarks of best practice

    CAMP provides an excellent way to build these relationships and create an opportunity for all individuals to feel empowered to contribute to social change.