Governance

National Advisory Committee

Open Arms' National Advisory Committee (NAC) meets three times a year. The NAC provides the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs with independent advice on the needs of the veteran community and how these can be addressed through Open Arms.

Each Open Arms region holds at least two Regional Consultative Forums (RCF) annually. The forums give key stakeholders an opportunity to meet representatives of Open Arms to discuss regional service delivery issues and community needs. Issues raised from these forums are considered by the NAC. 

Terms of Reference

The role of the National Advisory Committee (NAC) is to:

1. Provide independent and distinctive advice to the Minister on the needs of the veteran community and the ways in which these can be delivered by Open Arms.

2. Support Open Arms to develop programs and services that are:

  • responsive to the mental health needs of Australian veterans and their families
  • based on a health and wellness approach
  • coordinated with other mental health agencies
  • consistent with the government’s mental health policy, enabling Open Arms to be a key component of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs delivery of community based mental health care.

3. Provide guidance to Open Arms on:

  • issues and needs within the veteran and defence communities that impact on the delivery of Open Arms programs
  • strategic service delivery partnerships that will enable Open Arms to link with other providers in an integrated approach to mental health care.

4. Assess and report to the Minister on the operations and quality of outcomes delivered to the veteran community through Open Arms programs.

Appointment to the NAC is for three years. Ministerial appointments to the committee are made on the basis that while committee members may be members of interested organisations they do not serve on the committee as representatives of those organisations.

The NAC meets three times a year at Open Arms locations across the country. Secretariat support is provided by the Open Arms National Operations team.

Consultation

At each meeting, the NAC facilitates and engages in consultation with the local Open Arms client community to learn first-hand about how Open Arms is serving their communities and areas for potential improvement. The NAC consolidates these learnings and uses this to inform the advice they provide to the Minister.

Your feedback guides Open Arms. We want and value your feedback, ideas and suggestions to ensure Open Arms continues to meet the needs of the community we serve. You can openarms.coord [at] dva.gov.au (email the NAC via the Secretariat), or:

Open Arms NAC Secretariat
Department of Veterans’ Affairs
GPO Box 9998
Brisbane QLD 4001.