The Community Support Team or Work for the Dole project began in early 2003 to provide assistance to local Landcare and Bushcare groups in the Gosford and Wyong Regions.
This need for assistance had been identified in surveys and feedback provided to the Community Environment Network. A total of 18 teams working two days per week have been contracted. Teams are usually now run concurrently to give a work team four days per week. Each team is valued at $52,000 in labour and all of this has been applied to community projects.
The teams are provided under contract by WorkWise Central Coast Inc. and the Australian Government to CEN. CEN is required to employ a supervisor, provide transport and tools, obtain approvals, plan the work and obtain materials. CEN also contributes significant office and administration facilities, volunteer time and project liaison.
A high level of co-operation and mutual support has been needed to make these partnerships a success.
Most of the projects have involved partnerships including; Australian Government programmes (Community Water Grants), State Government Bodies (Mt Penang Parklands, Central Coast Campus and Tuggerah Reserve Trust, also known as Pioneer Dairy), Local Government (Gosford City Council and Wyong Shire Council and their Joint Water Authority) and Community Groups (CEN, Kariong Eco-garden, many local Landcare and Bushcare groups and the Wild-plant Rescue Service).