Fact Sheet

Carers SA – Transport and Care Project

Curation: Don Dunstan Foundation

Update: August 2018


South Australian carers have told us for a very long time that transport is a major issue for their families, and especially so in regional and remote areas. The lack of transport options make it difficult to get to appointments, social events, work and leisure. In the past, solutions based on established thinking and processes have not had the desired level of impact to significantly improve this issue.

The question arose how ‘sharing economy thinking’ could improve the wellbeing of carers and their families and the wider community. Discussions with the Don Dunstan Foundation resulted an interesting opportunity to investigate.

In September 2017, a Roundtable event, which focussed conversations on opportunities for the care and transport sectors to make a difference, was organised by the Don Dunstan Foundation in partnership with Carers SA as part of the Thinkers in Residence Program’s Social Capital Residencies. Information regarding the Foundation’s Social Capital Residencies can be found here[1].

Allyson Hewitt, who is the Principal Thinker in Residence, shared with the participants her considerable expertise as the leader of the social innovation programs at the MaRS Discovery District in Toronto, Canada.

A group of interested Roundtable participants from across organisations and sectors have come together since that event to investigate interest and potential options to pursue a collaborative pilot to address some of the persistent issue around transport and care – especially in regional and country areas.

The core outcome of a potential pilot is to improved access to transport options.

How we work

  • Carers SA has made a commitment to chair and coordinate the activities of the project.
  • Don Dunstan Foundation provides curative project support.
  • Participating organisations (members) are encouraged to share their expertise and where possible take/share lead roles on up-coming activities and tasks that are necessary for the success of the project.
  • Membership to the project group has been agreed to as being voluntary and fluid in order to ensure the best possible project outcomes.
  • The group meets when appropriate to plan and progress the project.
  • All members receive regular and timely communication and shared information regarding the project and its progress.

Progress to Date

  • After discussions and analysing sector experience, resources and locational data, the group selected the Murray Mallee area.

Although several other metropolitan, regional and country areas were considered, this region attracted the most local and cross sector support as a potential site for an innovative transport pilot.

  • The suggested pilot will:
    • Involve sharing of (fleet) vehicles in a joint pool via a booking and access system
    • Aim to make currently latent transport options available across weekdays as well as weekends
    • Act on the support and goodwill across participating organisations.
  • Several organisations have made commitments to support the pilot based on capacity and feasibility:
    • Via direct participation as an organisation willing to pool suitable fleet vehicles
    • By providing expertise and discussion input to support progress and the activities of the pilot
    • By providing pro bono support when specific professional expertise is required
    • By providing networking and promotional support for the project and its activities
    • By sharing ideas and experiences, discussions, suggestions, providing / sharing relevant information and data where appropriate, and engaging business, sectors and community.

Next Steps

  • Carers SA has designed initial sector and potential user survey to obtain data to confirm and detail transport needs and resource capacity within the selected region and community. The survey is published as an online survey[2]. (Hard copy option available with e-transfer support by participating organisations and community groups)
    • The aim of the survey is to engage as many transport users and providers as possible from diverse community and sector populations across the Murray Mallee.
    • Any data received from survey participants living outside the pilot region will support comparisons of transport needs data across different regions and may identify potential future pilot sites.
  • In planning via Don Dunstan Foundation: Meeting Thinker in Residence Guy Turnbull[3], September 2018 – of special interest: ‘RED’ (Rapid Enterprise Development).

[1] See webpage: https://www.dunstan.org.au/projects/socialcapital/

[2] Direct link to the online survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VGLJPBW

[3] See: https://www.dunstan.org.au/projects/turnbull/   and ‘RED’ http://www.redstrategygroup.com/

Marianne Lewis

Senior Policy, Projects and Carer Engagement Officer