On this page

  • A staged approach to supporting the community safety
  • Project progress timeline
  • Building Safer Communities Forum
  • Coordinating organisation
  • Action Group established
  • Common goal
  • Projects in progress

A staged approach to supporting the community safety

Empowering communities brings the community together to listen and respond to community concerns and ideas on how to tackle local issues that impact on crime and safety. The program is implemented in stages over a three year period.

Project progress timeline

The timeline shows that the projects are in progress


Building Safer Communities Forum

The Casey Forum was held in December 2021, building on the collective wisdom of the community and local stakeholders to consider issues that impact people in Casey. The key themes identified were:

  • community connection and inclusion
  • police-community relationships
  • safety both at home and in public areas
  • employment and education
  • media influence on perceptions of crime.

Watch the Casey Community Forum video:

Coordinating organisation

Empowering Communities is coordinated by Casey City Council. You can contact the Action Group via Danijel Sormaz at: dsormaz@casey.vic.gov.au (External link)

Action Group established

The Casey Action Group was established in April 2022, bringing together key services and other stakeholders. The Action Group is responsible for connecting the initiative to the broader community and overseeing its implementation.

Casey Action Group members

The following organisations and stakeholders are represented on the Action Group:

  • City of Casey
  • Centre for Multicultural Youth
  • South Sudanese-Australian Academic Society Inc.
  • Crime Stoppers
  • Hampton Park Community House
  • Neighbourhood Watch
  • Federation University
  • Department of Justice & Community Safety
  • Casey Community Members
  • Park Run Community Group
  • Community Leadership Program alumni
  • Anglicare
  • Sikh Australian Support for FV (SASFV)
  • Victoria Police

Common goal

The Casey Action group will work collaboratively to support grassroots community organisations in the City of Casey to design and deliver community-led projects that take evidence informed, innovative approaches to addressing local issues impacting on crime and perceptions of safety. 

By strengthening community connection, identity and safety, the Casey Empowering Communities Project aims to contribute to a long-term vision of reduction in crime and family violence.

Project objectives

Connection: increase community connections for priority groups* enhancing social inclusion, equity and access to services.

*Identified priority groups - women, identity based groups, young people and seniors.

Community identity: foster an inclusive, shared Casey identity through targeted interventions which celebrate diversity and multiculturalism.

Safety: support place based initiatives ‘in or outside the home’ which address crime, or increase people’s perception of safety, by design of physical assets or through media approaches.

Projects in progress

The Casey Action Group agreed on a funding model including two competitive grant rounds. The first round provided organisations with an opportunity to explore strategies to meet the specific needs of Casey’s diverse community.

Round 1 included grants of up to $30,000 to test new approaches, involving community members in the project design and trialing pilot projects for six months between December 2022 and May 2023.

Round 1 projects finished in May 2023. Round 2 provided an opportunity for all round one grant recipients to submit expressions of interest to scale up their projects with additional funding.

Round 1 projects


Artist in Residency program

Organisation: Baluk Arts’s Kaptify

Grant funding: $30,000

A peer and vocational support program using street art as an engagement tool.


Be Wise 2.0 program

Organisation: Pat Cronin Foundation

Grant funding: $10,000

A youth education program promoting wise choices around violence and ending the 'coward punch'.


Co-designing safety and wellbeing solutions for Casey’s Afghan community

Organisation: Family Life Ltd

Grant funding: $27,325


Kutumb 2.0 project

Organisation: IndianCare

Grant funding: $25,985

Raising awareness about gendered violence within the Indian community and delivering family strengthening programs.


Safety and Equality Matter

Organisation: Wellsprings for Women

Grant funding: $27,000

Multilingual safety resources for culturally and linguistically diverse residents, especially women.


Casey Community Advisory Project

Organisation: TaskForce

Grant funding: $26,681

Working with women who are at risk or experiencing family violence.


Engagement and mentoring project

Organisation: South Sudanese Australian Academic Society

Grant funding: $25,000

Using cultural dance, storytelling and art as a tool for young people, single-parent families and those with low English-speaking skills.


Save the Youth Hope of Australia’s Future Program

Organisation: Apostolic Faith Mission VICCARE (AFM VICCARE)

Grant funding: $19,000

A variety of youth recreation and mentoring programs with an aim to improve young people’s relationships with police.


Connecting and Empowering Communities Program

Organisation: Playgroup VIC

Grant funding: $23,500

Inclusive all-abilities playgroups to activate social connections, engagement and empower residents; particularly at risk families.


Playgroups program

Organisation: Islamic Council of Victoria

Grant funding: $25,000

A social inclusion program connecting and engaging culturally and linguistically diverse women and Muslim families.

Round 2 projects


Safety and Equality Matter

Organisation: Wellsprings for Women

Grant funding: $72,268

The project includes co-design workshops run by ‘Women’s Safety Champions’ who challenge the behaviours and norms that perpetuate violence. The additional funding presents an opportunity to expand the round one project stakeholder groups to also include Pakistani, Indian and Sri Lankan communities, in addition to Afghan, Indian and Arabic speaking communities involved in round one. The primary aim is to build on the knowledge obtained during round one and centralise the voices of culturally and linguistically diverse women in Casey to prevent violence.


Safe & Supported: Building Stronger South Asian Families

Organisation: IndianCare

Grant funding: $80,000

Follows on from ‘Project Katumb’ funded in round one. The project uses creative and innovative approaches to build relationships across the South Asian Community and address underlying causes of family violence. The project supports implementation of the ‘Baby Makes 3 program,’ using photovoice methodology and a co-design approach to understand and visualise what safety looks like inside and outside the home.


Be Wise (preventing social violence)

Organisation: Pat Cronin Foundation

Grant funding: $80,000

Expansion of the round one project from local sporting clubs into 25 secondary schools. The project is a social violence awareness project applying co-design elements to teach strategies to diffuse conflict and avoid violence. The project is a direct response to ‘coward punch’ street violence and will reach approximately 6,700 students from Casey. There are also plans to create an accessible e-learning module, which may reach up to 36,000 participants.