You Me & MPs – Online Community Toolkit
On 4 April 2022, the Parliament of Victoria and ECLC launched the much awaited You Me & MPs Online Toolkit at Parliament House. The event was a celebration of the Engaging Communities in Democracy (ECD) project, a partnership between ECLC and the Parliament of Victoria that began in late 2019.
The Toolkit was launched by The Hon. Nazih Elasmar, President of the Legislative Council, members of the ECD Advisory Committee and guests.
The ECD project involved working with CaLD and faith communities to improve understanding and engagement with the Victorian Parliament and its processes.
The project aimed to support these communities to engage with the parliamentary system of government and law-making, and to give community members the confidence to raise issues with their local Members of Parliament.
The final outcome of the project involved the development of the You Me & MPs Toolkit which has been translated into 10 different languages and includes:
- Animated videos on the role of an MP and how to contact an MP
- Short interviews with community members and parliamentary staff on their experiences
- Tools on how to engage and interact with local parliamentary representatives
Co-designed with the ECD Project Advisory Committee, the toolkit is based on the experiences of people in the Eastern Metropolitan Region of Melbourne (EMR) together with feedback provided by local MPs and Electorate Officers.
The Advisory Committee was made up of representatives from the following communities and organisations:
- Chin Community Victoria
- Bohri Dawoodi Muslim faith group
- Bahai Assembly
- Zorastrian faith group
- Hindu faith group
- Bounce refugee mentoring program
- Chinese Health Foundation
- Zomi community
- Whitehorse Interfaith Network
- Maroondah Interfaith Network
- Manningham Interfaith Network
- Boroondara Interfaith Network
President of the Legislative Council, Nazih Elasmar said, “The creation of this toolkit has been a wonderful collaboration that has tapped into the skills and talents of Victoria’s diverse communities.”
“We are confident that this work will contribute to better understanding of Parliament across many communities and will encourage greater participation in our democracy.”
Michael Smith, CEO of ECLC said, “We are so pleased to have partnered with Parliament on the Engaging Communities in Democracy project and believe the toolkit will help the communities feel more included and better equipped to understand the parliamentary system – across Victoria and nationally.”
“ECLC are grateful to have had the opportunity to connect with and learn from diverse leaders across CaLD and faith communities in this important step forward in fostering good community relationships and inclusion, while supporting these communities to advocate for issues they identify locally.” he added.
The toolkit is available now at https://www.engagingcommunities.eclc.org.au/