Change Agent Network (CAN)

  Statement of Purpose: The CAN Community of Practice has a vision to support a dynamic workforce which is responsive and sustainable, promoting evidence-based practice and collective wisdom, to facilitate measurable and beneficial outcomes for clients and communities.

Connecting leaders to improve alcohol and drug practice

The Change Agent Network is a major Department of Health Workforce Development initiative established in 2014. It was developed by Turning Point in collaboration with VAADA, the Bouverie Centre, Bendigo Community Health, Deakin University and Leadership Victoria and was designed to assist in the reform process across all catchments. It is a Victorian AOD workforce development Community of Practice (CoP) uniting existing and emerging leaders who are committed to developing and sharing leadership knowledge and expertise; to sharing values and principles around collaboration and evidence-based practice; and to generating and supporting culture and practice change. The current Change Agent Network membership includes those who have recently commenced in leadership roles as well as experienced leaders from AOD services such as community health, women’s services, family services, addiction medicine, treatment services and youth services.

Benefits to the Participant, their Organisation and the AOD Sector

For participants, the Change Agent Network will:

  • provide a greater understanding of the driving forces and motivations that are important to them in considering the question: ‘How can I contribute as a leader in the AOD sector?’
  • provide ways to deploy their skills, experiences, interests and values to create positive impact in the AOD sector
  • provide a development pathway to achieve greater personal and professional fulfilment
  • provide opportunities for collaboration and networking with other fellow participants within the AOD sector
  • enable participants to build a knowledge base around leadership frameworks, change management, evidence-based practice and implementation science

For their organisations, the Change Agent Network will:

  • present an opportunity for the organisation to retain talented staff, who are often searching for opportunities to expand their leadership, and for the individual to develop further in their organisation and the AOD sector
  • support the growth and development of emerging leaders through formal leadership training and networking in a policy-relevant context
  • enhance and develop the skills of existing leaders and provide them with peer support and access to leadership expertise
  • present opportunities for the organisation to build networks and collaborate with other organisations within the AOD sector
  • play a leading role in driving, promoting and supporting best practice within the organisation

For the AOD sector, the ultimate benefit of the Change Agent Network will be to:

  • facilitate the effective translation of evidence into best practice across AOD service delivery and treatment
  • generate a collaborative culture in AOD services which is committed to critical reflection and understands the importance of evidence-based practice
  • lead significant enhancements in clinical standards, workforce practices, client experiences and clinical outcomes in the AOD sector in Victoria
  • support the succession planning and professional development of the field and support a leadership culture based on collaboration rather than competition

Further information

For more information on the application process please visit or email