Forecasting Future Outcomes: Stronger Communities Investment Unit — 2018 Insights Report

This report, which was authored by Taylor Fry with support from Their Futures Matter (TFM) - a landmark reform of the Government of New South Wales (NSW), Australia to deliver improved outcomes for vulnerable children, young people and their families - and stakeholder agencies, presents key results and insights from the TFM Investment Model, an actuarial model of future outcomes and costs of providing key government services to children and young people in NSW.

The purpose of the report is to define groups of vulnerable children and young people and highlight the poor social outcomes and high government service and support costs needed to address the needs of these groups. The report examines the personal and family characteristics that drive the social outcomes of individuals in these groups, and points out the interdependencies between service use.

The report is an important input into the work of Their Futures Matter. It is intended to support business cases for new policies and interventions aimed at improving outcomes for vulnerable children. Subsequent work by Their Futures matter will begin to analyse root causes of vulnerability and analyse the potential policy implications of this analysis.

In this report, the estimated future cost of delivering government services for each of the identified vulnerable groups is analysed against those of a comparison group. However, the differences in the costs of services seen in these comparisons should not be interpreted as savings to be realised in full if new policies or interventions are introduced to target these groups. Identifying and assessing the expected impact of potential policies and interventions is beyond the scope of this report. In addition, while the necessity of delivering government services to vulnerable groups is acknowledged, the question of whether the costs incurred by vulnerable groups are appropriate is not assessed.