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The rock and hard place

In the vault

Whilst we are busily researching the history and impact of Ice in our communities, through contributions to our Ice Bank, in order to actively respond to the growing issue that ice represents in our communities, we’re warned of the need to be proactive about another far deadlier substance entering the fray....

From substance abuse to self-discovery. Icelands answer.

20 years ago Iceland was concerned by the increasing substance abuse of teenagers and the resultant social issues. Despite school based drug and alcohol education drug abuse was deemed to be spiralling out of control....

In the vault: Tackling Ice Nationally

“Its use creates a distinct problem for society. Unlike cannabis and heroin, ice is an extremely powerful stimulant. For some people, it can trigger psychological disturbances or violent and aggressive behaviour. Long term use may damage the brain and cause impaired attention, memory and motor skills. The distress ice causes for individuals, families, communities and frontline workers is d...

In the vault II

As we delve into the varying articles members have shared with us regarding ice, addiction and the multitude of arguments for changing the way we look at addiction and treatment, a few perspectives stand out. This week we focus on a blog post in the Huffington post focused on changing the criminal manner with which we respond to ice users....

In the vault

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF) is committed to preventing the harm caused by alcohol and other drugs in Australia with their focus being on primary, secondary and tertiary prevention....

In the Spotlight: Lowood shines in integrated service delivery

Whilst Mercy Community Services (MCS) has delivered outreach services to Lowood and the surrounding community for many years, last year saw the introduction of innovative services to expand support to families and the community....

Crystal Meth: What you said in 2015 and 2016 is In the spotlight

Crystal meth is short for crystal methamphetamine. As crystal meth’s effect is highly concentrated, it is considered addictive from the first time of use. Consequently, it is reported as being one of the hardest drug addictions to treat and the fatality rate is high. Crystal meth is commonly known as ice or sometimes glass....

Prevalence of ICE in families of children entering care: DCCSDS study

In late 2016, the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services conducted a once-off study based on a representative sample regarding the prevalence of methamphetamine use amongst parents whose children came into care (either intervention with parental agreement or child protection order)....

Play2Learn is In the Spotlight

As thousands of Queensland children returned to school last week, this week we shine a spotlight on a program designed to support young children and their families in preparing for education whilst focusing on holistic wellbeing....

Qld Child Safety September quarterly data plus Productivity Commission annual report released: what do the figures say?

The Australian Government Productivity Commission’s annual Report on Government Services (ROGS) Chapter 15, which covers Australia’s child protection services, was released on 24th January 2017. The Queensland Government has also released Child Safety’s September 2016 quarterly data....

Home Stretch is In the Spotlight

In Australia over 3000 young people aged 15 to 17 years exit the child protection statutory care system annually. In 2015, 566 young Queenslanders in this age group exited care. The experiences of many Australian young people post exit point to the concern that many young people may not be ready to exit care at 18 and our collective systems are not equipped to support their needs without an &lsq...

PeakCares Trivia with a Twist competition and all the behind-the-scenes intrigue is In the Spotlight

Transition from care in Europe: Part 2

Reflections on Transition to Independence Month - November 2016

Building the house of child protection

Have you ever built a house? If so, you’ll know just how complex it can be....

JK Diversity Consultants is In the Spotlight

JK Diversity Consultants specialise in working with Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities. Director, Jatinder Kaur, has been actively involved in advocating for the needs of CALD children, families and communities for well over a decade. These endeavours extend beyond Queensland to other states and territories of Australia. This advocacy has included supporting the needs of CA...

Transition from care in Europe: Part 1

As Transition to Independence month for 2016 draws to a close, it’s timely to look at approaches in other countries. Become (formerly The Who Cares Trust) undertakes similar work to CREATE and organisations for children and young people in care and care leavers in the UK. Not surprisingly, their work focuses on the same ‘big issues’ for children and young people in care and lea...

Working towards better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children and Families through building a strong, sustainable and capable sector - QATSICPP is In the spotlight

The Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak (QATSICPP) is the peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organisations across Queensland. Their members offer services that include: Foster and Kinship Care organisations, Family Support Services, Intensive Family Support and Recognised Entities.QATSICPP’s Senior Practice Team pr...

Transition to Independence Month Launch is In the Spotlight

Townsville put on a fabulous show to begin Transition to Independence (T2I) Month 2016. This month is an opportunity to hear the stories of young people, celebrate their journeys and successes and highlight policy and practice issues that ensure the road to independence is a journey to success for children and young people as they move through the Queensland care system towards independenc...

Reflections of an ACWA Conference Masterclass: Working with children who exhibit problematic sexual behaviour towards other children is In the Spotlight

At the 2016 Association of Children’s Welfare Agencies (ACWA) Conference, Pathways to Protection and Permanency: Getting it Right for Children, Young people and Families, Dale Tolliday presented a Masterclass on the topic: Is there an Accessible Framework and Roadmap for Prevention and Therapeutic Responses for Sexual Abuse that includes Children who Abuse?Dale Tolliday is the Cli...

Chris Boyle Consultancy is In the Spotlight

Chris Boyle Consultancy (CBC) offers training, professional supervision, assessment and intervention services as well as consultancy services to those engaged in child protection, community services and family support. Based in Queensland, CBC is focused on improving the lives of all children, kin, families and community members. This has been CBC’s Director Chris Boyle’s professiona...

Mentoring Young People is In the Spotlight

Multicultural Youth Empowerment Strategy (M-YES) was founded by Tamba Thomas in 2009. As a migrant himself, his observations of the needs of young people from diverse backgrounds led to this mentoring strategy. Thomas saw the need for mentoring and guidance for young people offered in a safe and inclusive manner. This not-for-profit organisation has reinvented itself and in recognition of the im...

Yadeni Tago - Moving Forward Together is In the Spotlight

Brisbane’s Family and Child Connect comprises Mercy Community Services (MCS), Indigenous Family and Child Connect (IFACC - Kurbingui Youth Development, KYD), Indigenous Intensive Family and Child Support Services (Indigenous Family and Child Support Services, IFACSS) and the Yeaca Dhargo Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Family Support Service....

Resilience in spite of evidence of the traumatic impact of neglect is In the Spotlight

When faced with overwhelming knowledge and research about the impact of neglect on a child or young person, it is easy to become despondent about the possibility of positive outcomes. Yet so much of what we know about resilience demonstrates the capacity of children and young people to overcome trauma and hardship. What is it that turns their forecast life trajectory around and demonstrates inst...

Karyn Wells Consultancy is In the Spotlight

Karyn Wells Consultancy offers various services to non-government organisations, government departments and individuals. For over 22 years Karyn Wells has worked within the child protection sector across a variety of roles. Karyn states that her passion for the safety of children and young people continues to grow and she never ceases to be impressed by the paralleled passion and commitment of f...

Reflections of a Child Safety Service Centre Manager Committed to Listening to Children and Young People is In the Spotlight

Following on from last week’s In the Spotlight, this week we showcase another champion identified through the CREATE Foundation’s Voices in Action project. This project offered an opportunity to hear the perspectives of young people with a care experience in the South West region. They were invited to talk about what experiences and processes work for them and assists their progress...

A Child Safety Officer's relections on young peoples' involvement in decision making is In the Spotlight

For almost a year the CREATE Foundation has been undertaking the Voices in Action project in the South West region. This project offers an opportunity to hear from young people with a care experience about their perceptions of care, what worked well for them and the areas they noted that could be improved. Young people have made suggestions for change. As part of Voices in Action workers passion...

Queensland Child Protection Week 2016 celebrates 30 years

Officially launched at Parliament House during the Awards Ceremony, Queensland’s 30th Child Protection Week began its anniversary year on Sunday September 4th and runs until 10th September 2016. The Awards received significant media and community attention due to the high calibre of recipients. Queensland Child Protection Week 2016 has boasted many further achievements thus far.Queensla...

Big, fat ticks for youth justice changes (but some question marks remain)

PeakCare applauded the Palaszczuk Government’s recent announcement that legislation would be introduced into Parliament next week to end the practice of treating 17-year olds as adults in Queensland’s justice system. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk stated that the aim will be to have all 17-year olds removed from adult prisons within 12 months....

Queensland Child Protection Week Awards 2016

PeakCare congratulates the 2016 Queensland Child Protection Week Award recipients. Each year numerous nominations are received and the onerous task of assessing applications and voting for the winners is undertaken. Whilst so many outstanding practitioners, policy makers, programs and individuals are nominated across the various categories, it is increasingly difficult to select winners. It is,...

Independent review of Queensland youth detention centres

PeakCare has welcomed the announcement made by the Queensland Government on 19th August 2016 of an independent review of Queensland's youth detention centres. When announcing the review, the Honourable Yvette D’Ath MP, Attorney-General and Minister for Justice referred to recent controversy concerning the Northern Territory’s Don Dale Detention Centre and serious allegations leve...

Pathways to Child Protection and Permanency is In the Spotlight

Upon reflection of the Association of Children’s Welfare Agencies (ACWA) National Conference: Pathways to Protection and Permanency Getting it right for children, young people and families, there were a multitude of consistent messages offered by national and international speakers with which few would disagree. There were also offerings that challenged those of us working in the Australia...

Aunties and Uncles Queensland is In the Spotlight

Aunties and Uncles Queensland is an early intervention and prevention mentoring program assisting vulnerable and socially isolated children aged 1 to 11 years within the greater Brisbane and Gold Coast areas. The mentor relationship affords each child time, attention, care and stability. Mentors also offer guidance and exposure to new experiences through activities and positive relationships. Pa...

AASW (Southern Queensland) is In the Spotlight

The Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) is the key professional body representing approximately 10,000 social workers throughout Australia. Social work is the profession noted for its commitment to social justice, the enhancement of quality of life and the development of the full potential of each individual, family, group and community in society. Arguably, this professional discipl...

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day is In the Spotlight

First held in 1988, National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day is celebrated annually on the 4th August. It is the largest national celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children....

Seed Skills is In the Spotlight

Seed Skills offer specialised training for residential care and family support services. Their training programs for community services have been developed by industry experts to ensure that all current industry-specific qualifications certification requirements are met. Training programs are delivered through a blend of class-based, workplace and webinar modular presentations to ensure that par...

White Boy Privilege

Do yourself a favour! Watch White Boy Privilege for the best and most powerful description of ‘white privilege’ that PeakCare has ever come across. ‘White Boy Privilege’ is a poem written by a 14 year old boy. His recital of the poem has now gone viral on YouTube....

Capricorn Community Development Association is In the Spotlight

Capricorn Community Development Association (CCDA) has as their mission statement Pro-actively working with the community since 1983. This reads as an understatement when delving into the work and passion of those who lead and are associated with CCDA....

Future Focused Families is In the Spotlight

Future Focused Families is an organisation that focuses on assessments of foster carers, kinship carers and specialist foster carers as well as eco mapping. Staff of this organisation work with both the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (DCCSDS) and non-government organisations. They also run training packages for carers and staff to enhance skills and professional...

Wellbeing for organisations and practitioners is In the Spotlight

Wellbeing Consultancy Australia was created to assist organisations, teams and individuals with the aim to increase wellbeing in the areas of management, leadership, team dynamics, personal and professional development. The organisation offers wellbeing workshops and private consultations that provide practical tools to enhance professional and personal capacity with the ultimate goal of inspiri...

Let their voices be heard is In the Spotlight

Let their Voices be Heard is a whole of community project coordinated by Bundaberg’s Child and Youth Protection Partnership (now Bundaberg’s Child, Youth & Family Alliance) in collaboration with individuals, organisations and services who work with or interface with children and young people. This project formed part of a 3 stage child and family friendly project with the longer...

Vic Auditor-General reviews progress with Vic resi care services

In 2014, the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office audited residential care services for children and young people in Victoria. The audit found that the Department of Health and Human Services had failed to oversee and ensure the safety and development of children in the residential care system, and that there were significant shortcomings in the quality of oversight and staffing of services,...

Good, but not good enough!

PeakCare welcomes changes to Youth Justice laws passed by Parliament last week. These changes include, amongst others, the re-introduction of youth justice conferencing, the abandonment of boot camp orders, removal of the provision for findings of guilt for a childhood offence when no conviction is recorded to be admissible in court when later sentencing the person for an adult offence, the rein...

Youth Care Support Services (YCSS) Child, Youth and Family Intervention Service is In the Spotlight

Respect, Empower & Achieve are the mantras of YCSS Child, Youth and Family Intervention Service. They endeavour to ensure that each child and young person is noted and respected for their uniqueness. In working with children and young people, particularly in their advocacy work, they are a voice for children and young people and as such encourage young people to also find their own voices. E...

Amovita is In the Spotlight

Amovita has as its mantra – inspiring business and people excellence. They have a culture of cohesion and creativity. Their consultants and support staff are problem solvers who avoid risk averse processing and continuously look for new and improved ways of working with clients and the community services sector. They describe their ‘approach’ as refreshingly different in that t...

A Street University for young people by young people is In the Spotlight

The Street University is a youth development project created by the Ted Noffs Foundation. Originally named The Wayside Foundation, Noffs Foundation was founded in 1970 by Australian humanitarian, Reverend Ted Noffs and his wife. Prior to establishing the Foundation, Noffs established Sydney’s first crisis centre in 1968, set up the first Drug Referral Centre in Sydney in 1967, co-founded t...

The professional is personal is In the spotlight

Dr Fotina Hardy is a Lecturer in Social Work and Human Services at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and leads their field education unit. Fotina is also the South East Queensland President of the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). In this robust voluntary role, she covers a multitude of issues that involve practice discussions, policy positions and advocacy stances tak...

Encompass Family and Community is In the Spotlight

The Encompass Family and Community team works with organisations and individuals who share their passion for excellence in child and family work....

REFOCUS is In the Spotlight

Redirecting and Empowering Families with Opportunities in Culturally Unique Services...

Domestic and Family Violence Prevention is In the Spotlight

Not Now, Not Ever will domestic and family violence be tolerated in Queensland....

A Week to say thank you to those who care: Foster and Kinship Carer Week is in the spotlight.

The Queensland child protection system relies on the generosity and capacity of countless foster and kinship carers who give tirelessly of themselves and their families in supporting and caring for children and young people in the care system....

Unlocking Transition. A local initiative intent on reaching out across Queensland is In the Spotlight

The overarching vision of the Mt Gravatt Child Safety Transitions Alliance is: Every child in care is provided the equality of opportunity and the equity of participation that helps them to develop identity, belonging and acceptance....

Senate Committee Inquiry into Gonski funding cuts

Opening statement by Mr Lindsay Wegener, Executive Director, PeakCare Queensland Inc. at hearing held in Brisbane on 5th April 2016...

Victoria's Royal Commission into Family Violence is In the Spotlight

What did they have to say about children and young people?...

Connection for children and young people is In the Spotlight

The vast majority of professionals who work with children and young people understand and acknowledge the power of connection.The importance of connectedness in building resilience, assisting healing and ensuring long term wellbeing is well known. Furthermore this is not a new concept. It is decades old....

Valuing the Voices of Families in the Queensland Child Protection System is In the Spotlight

Most working in child protection, regardless of their position, are well aware of the complexities that families, children and young people need to navigate on a regular basis....

Queensland Child Protection Week is In the Spotlight

32 Years Ago a small group of professionals stood up. 30 Years ago they founded Queensland Child Protection Week (QCPW). This week, this collective and QCPW is In the Spotlight....

Who Am I is In the Spotlight

The Who Am I program was developed as a partnership between the Indigenous Family and Child Support Service (IFACSS) and the Brisbane Youth Detention Centre (BYDC) Programs and Transition Team. The aim of the program is to focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and their social and emotional wellness in order to enhance inclusion....

A fresh new look and name for BoysTown is in the Spotlight

On Sunday February 28th 2016 the national organisation BoysTown officially became yourtown....

The vulnerability of children and young people in the legal system is In the Spotlight

The Youth Advocacy Centre (YAC) offers free legal services, support and services to children, young people and families with a specific focus on children and young people aged 10 to 18 years. YAC’s primary client group is those who are involved in, or are at risk of involvementin, the youth justice and/or the child protection system. This includes young people who are hom...

On the matter of secure care

The possibility of Queensland children being placed in secure care is again emerging as a hot topic of discussion....

Young people building social supports through goals is In the Spotlight

Goalzie is a recently released free app that was developed by the Safe and Well Online project, a collaboration of the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre, the University of South Australia, the Western Sydney University, Digital Advertising Agency, Zuni and the Queensland University of Technology....

Young people born in 1997 are in the spotlight

If you or others you know were born in 1997 and have had a care experience, the CREATE Foundation needs you! If you have worked with a young person over the past 12 months who transitioned from care to independence in 2015, CREATE needs you too!...

A Platform to Independence

Platform 18 is in the spotlight...

Individual advocacy for children and young people in out of home care. - lessons from practice is in the spotlight

At the recent PeakCare Encore Sessions, Catherine Moynihan, Official Solicitor of the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) outlined the role of the OPG and highlighted the importance of advocating for and listening to children and young people. The OPG came to be on July 1st, 2014 as a result of recommendations of the Carmody Inquiry....

Child Protection Reforms and Knowledge Circles: Understanding Real Family and Community Needs in Family Support is in the spotlight

Those in attendance at the recent PeakCare Encore Sessions were fortunate to partake in the presentation by the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak’s (QATSICPP’s) Raymond Brunker, Reform Projects Officer. Raymond outlined the Knowledge Circles established by QATSICPP to enhance the Queensland Child Protection reforms through ensuring a voice f...

Supported Independent Living Services (SILS) in the Spotlight

Supported independent living is provided to young people as a transitional process from foster, kinship or residential care in preparation for independent living. Young people live in residential premises either individually or with one or two other young people. They are supported by practitioners who visit the premises and offer transitional support. Several organisations across Queensland pro...

Working Together to Protect Children and Young People From Sexual Harm

This week, PeakCare was incredibly fortunate to be able to offer encore sessions from esteemed researchers, advocates and experts in child protection. Those who agreed to offer encore presentations had previously delivered their messages to a range of forums and were highly regarded. What was important about these presentations is that they not only offered a recap of important information, they...

Young People Making a Difference is In the Spotlight

Formed in 2012 in Central Queensland, Young People Making a Difference (MAD) is a not for profit organisation. All MAD staff, support adults and young leaders are volunteers. MAD is a program that reaches out to young people aged 12 to 18 years of age. It is based around peer support and adult mentoring. Young People Making a Difference recently won the Youth Category of...

Transition to Independence Month is In the Spotlight

Each year approximately 500 young people exit care to live independently. Focusing on young people’s journeys to independence is the aim of Transition to Independence Month (T2I Month). Held each November, it’s an initiative of G Force, a State-wide group comprising government and non-government organisations....

An innovative service response to young people in care is in the spotlight

Children and young people ‘self-placing’ has been a long stated concern with regard to their wellbeing. In the Brisbane region, an exciting and innovative response program aims to redress this issue....

A Circle of Wellbeing and Giving is In the Spotlight

Most services are intent on providing quality services to clients. Some provide holistic wellbeing. Every now and then a unique service that provides innovation to enhance client wellbeing whilst also operating a circle of giving back comes to the fore. Joining Hands is such an organisation....

Transforming Theory and Research into Practice is In the Spotlight

Internationally respected thought leader Dr Julie Tilsen is coming to Brisbane....

Queensland Says Enough!

Tackling Domestic and Family Violence is in the Spotlight...

Fatherhood is in the Spotlight

With Child Protection Week just around the corner, fatherhood is in the spotlight. Child Protection Week, which begins on Father’s day, is an apt opportunity to promote the importance of fathers as active participants and carers in their children’s lives....

Over 130 Queensland Child Protection Week Events are In the Spotlight

Each year Child Protection Week takes place from the first Sunday in September. In 2015 September 6th-12th is Child Protection Week. In Queensland a landmark number of events are being held. Approximately 100 events take place in Queensland during Child Protection Week each year. This year the number will exceed 130....

When solutions become the problem

There’s little left to be said that hasn’t already been said about the failure of the I.T. system to process reports of suspected child abuse by school principals. The public has a right to feel confident in the systems developed to manage the protection of our state’s children and in this instance, we have been let down badly....

National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN)

NAPCAN was co-founded in 1987 by Rosemary Sinclair AO and Christine Stewart OAM. In the almost three decades of its presence in Australian society NAPCAN has made a significant contributionto the safety and wellbeing of Australia's childrenand young people. NAPCAN has aimed to raise public awareness of child abuse and neglect as well as the impacts which include increased risk of...

Stylin Up is in the Spotlight

This week we celebrated the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day 2015 on August 4th, with: ‘Little People, Big Futures’ being the key theme of this significant day in our calendar.This week we also celebrate an inspiring program incorporating a group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people with big futures making a difference in their c...

Timely Support for Children and their Families

"The role of practitioners in family support, child protection and out-of-home care is to find the strengths within families and the resources within their communities that support change and promote greater protectiveness for their children from all forms of harm."Australian Childhood Foundation CEO Joe Tucci and Deputy CEO Janise Mitchell....

Queensland Child Protection Week is in the spotlight

Queensland Child Protection Week is co-ordinated by a group of approximately 25 representatives from both government departments and non-government organisations across the state. The week is traditionally held from the first Sunday in September. This year Child Protection Week begins on September 6th and ends on September 12th....

An invitation for different ways of working

Differential Response is in the spotlight...

QFCC Services Directory is in the Spotlight

Most of us in the community services sector know that keeping abreast of available service options and also ensuring up-to-date contacts and resources is a significant and often burdensome requirement of all organisations needing to make appropriate and timely referrals when working with children, young people and their families. Just keeping our own contact lists up to date seems like a m...

Listening to and engaging with the VOICES OF CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead....

Valuing the Voice of Children and Young People

Office of the Public Guardian is in the Spotlight...

Love Bites is in the Spotlight

As many are aware, May is Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month. PeakCare began the month with our post on the Our Watch initiative that is working towards a National strategy to prevent violence against women and their children. This week we focus on a preventative program aimed at young people....

Tree of Shade

Deception Bay is in the Spotlight...

Shining a spotlight on medicating kids

Yet again, a spotlight is being shone on the practice of prescribing psychotropic medication to Queensland children, both children in care and those from the general population. ...

Take heart Australia is leading the way on Violence Prevention

The National Framework to Prevent Violence against Women and their Children is in the Spotlight...

Domestic and Family Violence is in the Spotlight

“The guarantee of safety in a battering relationship can never be based upon a promise from the perpetrator, no matter how heartfelt. Rather, it must be based upon the self-protective capability of the victim. Until the victim has developed a detailed and realistic contingency plan and has demonstrated her ability to carry it out, she remains in danger of repeated abuse.”Judith Le...

Unearthing and examining ideas, assumptions and practices

Youth Advocacy Centre is in the Spotlight

“YAC is a great organisation. The YAC workers supported me and assisted me with all my problems. They were friendly, reliable, they listened, were supportive and even came to the house to help.”...

Are we there yet

Strengths based Practice is in the Spotlight...

The Next Step

For so many years those of us in the child protection system have been asking young people at the age of 18 years to take the next step into adulthood, often totally independent and most often without a continuum of care to assist this transition to adulthood offered to most of our young people who grow up in their family homes. We are all well aware both through research and anecdotal evidence...

World Social Work Day 2015

This year's theme forWorld Social Work Dayis‘Promoting the Dignity and Worth of Peoples’....

Queenslands Strengthening Families Protecting Children Framework for Practice

This week, the launch of the Queensland Strengthening Families Protecting Children Framework for Practice is a highlight of our child protection calendar and marks a timely response to one of the key recommendations of the Carmody Inquiry. The intensive training regime, initially aimed at reaching over three thousand practitioners, is underway....

Not Now, Not Ever

Queensland’s Domestic and Family Violence Taskforce has released their report. They’ve undertaken a mammoth task delivered in just a few short months. ...

Open letter of appreciation to Queensland Foster and Kinship Carers, 2014

Dear Foster and Kinship CarersThank you! Sincerely and wholeheartedly, Queensland thanks you!...

Innovation based on research and practice wisdom takes time

Engaging with research to deliver exemplary services to children, young people, parents and the community takes time....

It takes a Village

In the spotlight -Key Assets on Team Parenting...

Is this our next Inquiry?

The increasing over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children...

Oxford University is a Key Asset for Queensland Children and Young People

Key Assets Queenslandis a non-government agency that provides foster care placements for children and young people with high and complex needs. It’s an organisation with international links through its founding body,Core Assets. In spite of distance, Key Assets strives to hold true to the ethos upon which Core Assets and subsequently Key Assets was formed – a...

Shining the Spotlight on Early Intervention for Children and Families

In a case of ‘Pay it Forward’ yourtown has a therapeutic intervention they’d like to share across our sector to ensure children and their families benefit....

Child protection. When politics must take a back seat.

The State election is fast approaching. Campaigning by the political parties is now in full swing with each releasing their policy platforms and promises for the future. Unlike some previous elections, child protection does not seem to have become a hot topic this time around....

DONT READ THIS if you have your life sorted!!!

My name is Dillon and I am a young consultant with Create. I was in care for 10 years and was lucky to turn out the way I am. Though I have had a good experience, there have still been many times when I have fallen and needed help, whether it be getting a car and license or a job and a house. That is why I am privileged to talk about a brand new resource to help young people transition to indepe...

Talking Families

Since last Sunday night, radios and television screens have been sending out the messages of Talking Families, the Talking Families website was launched and posters have been appearing in shopping centres and other venues....

Let's Talk Kinship

Guest book review by Annaley Clarke...

Who pays for poverty?

Anti-Poverty Week 2014 is here with the news that 2.5 million Australians are now living below the poverty line....

In the spotlight with Claire Randall

An interview with Claire Randall...

In the spotlight with Brenda Boustead

An interview with Brenda Boustead...

In the spotlight with Bernadette Burns

An Interview with Bernadette Burns....

Child Protection Week marred by Bolt commentary

It’s all black and white according to Andrew Bolt (Courier Mail, September 11). During Child Protection Week he managed to selectively quote Aboriginal leaders and spokespeople while assigning them to one of two camps....

View from the frontline with Steve Jacques

This week's View from the Frontline is Steve Jacques.Steve isa Director with Key Assets....

View from the Frontline with Alison Ingram

This week's View from the Frontline is Alison Ingram.Alison iscurrently Child and Youth Practice Lead withAnglicare Southern Queensland....

Release of tender specifications for new CBIR and IFS services

This is to bring to your attention the release of tender specifications for new Community Based Intake and Referral (CBIR) services and Intensive Family Support (IFS) services, by the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services....

View from the Frontline with Phil Schultz

This week's View from the Frontline is Phil Schultz,Phil is the Queensland and Northern Territory State Director for Mission Australia (MA)....

Invitation to nominate Reform Network members

You are invited to nominate one or more representatives to form a network with whom PeakCare can regularly liaise about the planning and implementation of reforms associated with the State Government’s response to recommendations of the Carmody Child Protection Commission of Inquiry....

View from the Frontline with Professor Bob Lonne

This week's ‘View from the Frontline’ is from Professor Bob Lonne....

Try something different for NAIDOC 2014

Think about what it means to be white!...

View from the Frontline with Cheri Yavu-Kama-Harathunian

This week's ‘View from the Frontline’ is from Cheri Yavu-Kama-Harathunian,also known asAunty Cheri....

Coronial Inquiry and the Lessons to be Learned

The report of a Coronial inquiry into the death of a child, 8 year old Faith, who was known to the Queensland child protection system was released earlier this week. Consistent with the Coroners Act 2003 (Qld), the report is available from the Officer of the State Coroner’s website....

Ramp It Up

In the past few weeks, our sector has seen three new child protection bills passed by Parliament, a new Social Services Investment Framework released, the announcement of an unprecedented financial investment in child protection reforms in the State Budget, the ‘settling in’ of the governance arrangements established to exercise oversight of, and guide, the reforms, and steps taken t...

Budget announcement is good news for child protection but comes with a caution

PeakCare welcomes the announcement of a $406 million investment in child protection over five years. The State Government is to be commended for putting its money where its mouth is and maintaining its commitment to implementing recommendations of the Child Protection Commission of Inquiry led by Commissioner Tim Carmody SC ....

View from Frontline with Debra Mainwaring

This week's warrior is Debra Mainwaring. Debra offers us a 'view from the frontline' ais the Principal Psychologist ofCared4 by DJM Psychological Serviceswhich provides services and programs that support the learning and development of vulnerable children, young people, their families, care teams and schools....

PeakCare Research Group

In mid 2013, PeakCare established a Research Group to bring together PeakCare member agencies with research positions and / or an interest in research and evaluation....

Government response to the Carmody Inquiry and the challenges that lie ahead

On Monday 16th December, the Queensland Government released its responseto the Child Protection Commission of Inquiry led by the Honourable Tim Carmody SC....

View from the Frontline

“I have learnt that most families usually know what they need, and what society expects of them – we just have to ask the right questions. “ Debra Doherty...

View from the Frontline

“I have learnt that families usually know what they need, and what society expects of them – we just have to ask the right questions. “ Debra Doherty...

Shining the light on Transitioning to Independence

November is Transition to Independence (T2I) month. This is a time to reflect on best practice and share opportunities to improve the supports offered to young people through their transition from care to independence....

You Said It

PeakCare is very pleased to release to our Member Agencies and Supporters a report detailing your feedback about PeakCare’s preliminary response to recommendations of the Carmody Inquiry. Our sincere appreciation is extended to those who, within a very tight timeframe, provided us with their well-considered feedback as well as those who participated in our recently held roundtable me...

Do we use our resources optimally to achieve our aims? How would we know?

Wouldn’t you think that when money is tight, we would make extra sure that we are spending it on things that work?...

Industry Body Proceeding

In a move likely to be one of the most significant in many years in changing the community services landscape within Queensland, a decision has been made to proceed with the establishment of a Community Services Industry Body (CSIB). ...

Inquiry Hopes and Fears

In the final week or so leading up to the release of the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry (the Inquiry) report by 30 June 2013, PeakCare invited member agencies, supporters, eNews readers and others to tell us about your hopes and fears about the recommendations....

Australia Unites to end Over-Representation!

On 13 June, leaders of national, state and territory organisations are meeting in Melbourne to support a national campaign to end the scourge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children’s over-representation in child protection systems throughout this country....

For the Big Budget News. Wait for the Inquiry.

While the state budget announced on Tuesday 4th June contained some news for the child protection sector, it is expected that we will need to wait for the Child Protection Inquiry to conclude before we find out more about ways in which the Government can better invest its financial resources in creating an improved child protection system....

Response to the Commission of Audit's Final Report

On 1st May, the Newman Government tabled in Parliament the Commission of Audit’s Final Report and the Government’s response to the report’s 155 recommendations....

What you are saying about secure care

Prompted by proposals for the introduction of a secure care option for young people having been brought to the attention of the Child Protection Commission of Inquiry, PeakCare recently released a discussion paper, Secure Care – Needed or Not?...

Charge up the GPS.

Charge up the GPS -Our Response to the Inquiry’s Discussion Paper.I love my GPS! What a fantastic invention! It works out the route that I am to travel, tells me where and when to turn, tells me how long it will take to get there, even warns me when I may be breaking the rules and driving a tad too fast – too easy. But sometimes I hate my GPS –...

Beneath and Beyond the Bravado

Recent hearings of the Queensland Child Protection Inquiry have focussed on residential care....

Medication Minefield

The use of Ritalin and anti-psychotic drugs has hit the news again in Australia...

Let\'s talk about Permanency Planning and Adoption

One of the more contentious issues brought to the attention of the current Child Protection Commission of Inquiry concerns the role of adoption....

Child protection is simple, isn\'t it?

Child protection is simple, isn’t it? Work out who the bad parents are who abuse their kids and give them to more deserving families who will love and care for them....

Who is at the helm?

This week, PeakCare submitted a catalogue of around forty documents to the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry. The documents that were assembled within the catalogue included feedback in response to drafted government agency policies, submissions, discussion papers and research reports produced or commissioned by PeakCare in recent years....

If this was the flu, we would call it an epidemic

Public hearings by the Child Protection Inquiry commenced this week with the release of some astounding figures. We have now reached the point where the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services is projecting that 23.8% - nearly one quarter - of Queensland’s children will be known to Child Safety Services during 2012-13. For Aboriginal and Torres Str...

Re-thinking out-of-home care

Media attention has again been placed on residential care. This is likely to continue, if not significantly increase as the current Child Protection Commission of Inquiry proceeds. Whilst residential care appears to be the focus of attention at the moment, this could and is likely to extend very quickly to other forms of out-of-home care....

Re-shaping the System. But into What?

Widespread media commentary has noted that, whilst most inquiries into the abuse and neglect of children are ‘crisis-driven’ and prompted by scandalous treatment of an individual child or family, no such impetus has underpinned the establishment of Queensland’s current Child Protection Inquiry. Rather, its stated rationale is to deliver a ‘road map’ for child...

No Closed Doors

Inquiry Opened with a Promise of No Closed DoorsYesterday, Commissioner Tim Carmody opened the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry. His recommendations for the ‘road map’ for Queensland’s child protection system for the next decade, are due in 10 months....

Launch of Cultural Diversity and Child Protection Report

On 17th July, I was able to launch my report, Cultural Diversity and Child Protection: A review of the Australian research on the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) and refugee children and families in Brisbane with the kind support of the Queensland Commission of Children and Young People and Child Guardian, there were more than 40 people who attended the launch. The video fr...

Meet The Protectors Expos

You’ve heard of The Avengers, you’ve heard of the Justice League of America, now meet The Protectors!PeakCare is pleased to announce that the Child Protection Expos we will be hosting in five locations during 2012 will be named Meet The Protectors. In keeping with our aim to ensure that the Expos are events about the people, by the people, for the people, this seems to be a...

Do Not Miss the Missing Peoples Conference

Every week, children and young people in care go missing – sometimes for only a few minutes or hours, sometimes for weeks, months or years.Children, young people and families with whom you are working may also be experiencing the turmoil created when a member of their family is missing....

Finding the Missing Link between Missing Persons and Child Protection

Julie Clark is a Lecturer at Griffith University and has conducted research into missing persons and their families. Julies research inspired The Disappearances Project.Julie is this weeks Child Protection Warrior. Here is a guest post by Julie, about Julie....

Child Protection Expos, Coming Your Way Soon

Planning for five Child Protection Expos to be held in different locations across the State is now well and truly underway. We have selected a much more exciting title than Child Protection Expo, but you will need to wait before that is revealed in a future edition of eNews....

Shining the Light on Residential Care

In recent weeks, a bright light has been shone on residential care services in Queensland. On 30th May, ABC Lateline aired a story questioning whether residential care is “serving as an incubator for a lifetime of crime, violence and prison”....

Kindergarten Plus

The Labor Party has announced a Kindergarten Plus policy that includes $20 million worth of initiatives to improve and increase the accessibility of kindergartens.These initiatives include:$10 million in Renovation and Refurbishment Grants for eligible kindergartens to undertake infrastructure upgrades (such as painting, new bathrooms or kitchens, restumping or a new roof)$4.3 mill...

Maternal Child and Health Service to give \"all mums and bubs the best possible start to life\"

The LNP has announced a plan to establish a $92 million Maternal and Child Health Service to be made available to all parents and newborn children across the State. Staffed by nurses with experience in maternal and child health, this service will include visits to newborn parents’ homes and free community health clinics to:provide advice and support on child health, parenting,...

Do We Care?

“Here’s what I want to explore: Can we teach people to care?I know that we can teach them not to care; that’s pretty easy. But given the massive technological and economic changes we’re living through, do we have the opportunity to teach productive and effective caring? “- Seth Godin...

Queensland Election 2012 Update

Since PeakCare asked member agencies and other interested parties to send their commentaries on the Queensland child protection system, the areas of domestic violence and child sexual abuse have received significant attention. The need to remain mindful of confidentiality in circumstances of domestic violence and child abuse reporting has also received comment.The issues of domestic vio...

We Need to Lift Our Game

As Queensland gears up for a State Election, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander controlled organisations are asking: “Can it get any worse for the safety and well-being of children and families?”The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in care currently sits at 37% and is continually rising especially in that part of the system where neglect and poverty...

Protecting Children or Systems?

“There is no trust more sacred than the one the world holds with children. There is no duty more important than ensuring that their rights are respected, that their welfare is protected, that their lives are free from fear and want and that they can grow up in peace.” Kofi AnnanAs Queensland gears up for a State Election PeakCare is asking pertinent questions about child pro...

Behind the 8 ball

Pay Equity is a hot topic since the national pay equity win of February 1, 2012. This much anticipated outcome followed extensive national campaigning and comes three years after the Queensland pay equity win of 2009. Those of us fortunate enough to have employers who honoured that win in Queensland are now being fullyremunerated under the pay equity rates rolled out over...

Vote 1 - Children and Their Families

“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children”. – Nelson MandelaChild protection is a topic on the agendas of most governments and communities globally. Countries around the world consistently grapple with the multiple issues and competing tensions involved in protecting our most vulnerable children and...

Where Is Superwoman?

Media is perhaps the most pervasive force shaping our cultural norms and our self-concept. The collective message delivered by media about the value and power of girls, young women and women undeniably shapes and molds us all in varying degrees. But nothing is quite so obtrusive today as the media’s obsession with, and let’s face it, blatant attack on women and girls. In the media, w...

Community Control in Indigenous Communities - Does it Work?

“I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them but to inform their discretion.” Thomas JeffersonRecently at PeakCare we have been involved in research and discussion around the issue of community c...

Engagement: 2012 New Year\'s Resolution

What will you do in 2012 to engage?...

Do As I Say Not As I Do

As a social worker and longtime social justice advocate, I have been carefully watching the Occupy Wall Street movement and related events. I am torn as I write this, between wanting to discuss the implictions of social media for social justice and social advocacy and also looking at the response to the Occupy Wall Street protests, which is actually a response to freedom of speech, the right to...

Foster Carers Speak Out About Transition From Care

Very pleasingly, Transition From Care Month 2011 was met with considerable media attention. Through several radio interviews and newspaper articles, public attention was drawn to the issues faced by around 400 Queensland young people who leave care each year.Even more pleasingly, foster carers elected to add their voice to our media campaign. In response to a column entitled &ldqu...

Swearing to aspire to...

“Be the change you want to see in the world." - GandhiWhat do Jimmy Barnes, Keith Urban, Hamish and Andy, Will Anderson and Hazem el Masri have in common? They’re all swearing and they are encouraging other men to do so too: Jimmy Barnes says all working men should swear Keith Urban says all country boys should swear Hamish and...

November is Transition From Care Month

For three years running, November has been celebrated as “Transition From Care Month”. It is the time of year when we are all asked to stop and fully reflect on the needs of around 400 Queensland young people who leave care each year. Very importantly, it is a time set aside for us to listen to these young people as they themselves tell us what they need to support...

AASW Conference was fantastic but where were the child protection workers?

Congratulations to the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) for conducting a well-organised, entertaining and highly informative Biennial Conference. Held in Townsville from 4th to 6th November, the Conference was incredibly well-attended and featured a range of high calibre keynote and session speakers.PeakCare Queensland was pleased to sponsor the Conference’s Welcome Cockt...

Don\'t Fence Me In?

I recently received some information about Queensland schools that I thought was very surprising. This information came from some members of the public who contacted PeakCare expressing their concerns about the absence of any legislated or administrative obligations requiring schools to be fenced.This was a surprise to me as I could not recall having ever seen a school that was no...

Cheaper to Medicate

“Children are one-third of our population and all of our future”-unknownThe overmedication of babies, children and teenagers is gaining more and more media attention both in Australia and around the world.The over prescribing of anti-depressant and antipsychotic medications in particular is becoming increasingly concerning. The decision to use of these drugs t...

A Risky Combination

“In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of.” ConfuciusOnce again, this week’s ABC Four Corners program has opened up avenues for discussion around the implications on society of poverty, this time in relation to premature birth. BBC documentary, “23weekbabies: The Price of Life” discussed the ethics of keeping premature babies alive....

Do you know about this?

Do you know who Pemulwuy and Tedbury were?Do you know when the first and only treaty was negotiated between British colonists and Aboriginal people and what became of this treaty?Do you know how many people were killed at Slaughterhouse Creek in 1838? Or during the Myall Creek Massacre in that same year? Or at the Cullin-la-Ringo Station near Emerald in 1861?Do you know when...

Heads in the Sand

“Inequality, rather than want, is the cause of trouble.” Chinese ProverbThe recent airing of “Poor Kids” on the ABC’s 4Corners program has opened up many avenues for discussion, particularly around the implications on society of financial inequality.The stories in the documentary, told by three British children living below the poverty line, give the viewer an...

Freedom of Speech or Racist Slander?

In a recent edition of PeakCare’s Enews, “In The Loop”, I commented upon a letter that I had sent to the Editor of the Sunday Mail in response to an article by Mr Andrew Bolt entitled “Very sorry state of affairs indeed”.After submitting my letter to the Editor, a finding was brought down by Federal Court Justice Mordecai Bromberg that Mr Bolt had breached the Ra...

Pay Equity Chapter Two

Last week saw some tumultuous activity take place in relation to pay equity that culminated on Thursday with the repealing of the original Regulation of 4th August 2011.This should not be viewed as the end of the pay equity story however. It is far better to regard last week’s events as the closing of one chapter and the commencement of another.Throughout the week, PeakCare soug...

The Real Stories behind Paying for Pay Equity

At the start of this week, PeakCare Queensland wrote to our Member Agencies seeking to find out the “real stories behind paying for pay equity” so that we can properly represent these stories in our advocacy on their behalf and on behalf of the children, young people and families who are entitled to receive high quality services.Amidst the confusion of facts and figures being cont...

The Week that Was.

As Child Protection Week has now ended for 2011, it’s timely to consider the question, “Are the systems and services designed to protect our children improving?”The answer is a mixed one – many things have improved, whilst others have a long way to go before, as a community, we can feel confident that our children are being adequately protected.If we look back in ti...

In Defense of Families

“We all have one idea of what the color blue is, but pressed to describe it specifically, there are so many ways: the ocean, lapis lazuli, the sky, someone’s eyes. Our definitions were as different as we were ourselves.” —Sarah DessenI’ve been thinking about the information which is disseminated and shared about family through the media, through profe...

Listen, Believe, Report.

Today is White Balloon Day. As the 15th White Balloon Day campaign held during child protection week annually, this day is about recognition, awareness and support for victims of child sexual assault.When Braveheart’s Founder and Executive Director Hetty Johnston spoke at the White Balloon lunch, she outlined some alarming statistics....

Do Tools Rule?

The Munro Review of the United Kingdom’s child protection system promotes a vision for “child-centred” practice where professional expertise in individualising the services to be provided to children, young people and families is properly valued.Underpinning the reforms recommended by Professor Eileen Munro were concerns about the UK’s use of “one-size-fits-all&r...

It\'s all about the sum of the parts, isn\'t it?

Amongst the range of changes to be made to the United Kingdom’s child protection system, Professor Eileen Munro recommended that there be a shift away from conducting inspections of individual organisations to police their compliance with various guidelines, rules and performance measures. In place of this, she recommended that an inspection system be created that allows for an exami...

When the tragedy of youth suicide strikes, will you know what to do?

During recent weeks, a series of articles byThe Australianhas shone a spotlight on the deaths by suicide of two teenage girls from Maryborough – both aged 16 – in 2009. Their deaths in such sad circumstances and at such a young age are, of course, a tragedy and our sincere sympathy is extended to their families and friends.The articles published byThe Austr...

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

“Hookers, it seems, are the new social workers and they are demanding respect.”~Des Houghton, Australian Courier MailWhen you look at the image to the left, do you think “social worker”? No, me either. So it came as a bit of a shock when I received the link for a recent news article run in the Courier Mail entitled, Dark underbelly to sex industry spin and read Des...

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

“Whiteness in a racist, corporate controlled society is like having the image of an American Express Card. . . . stamped on one’s face: immediately you are “universally accepted.” — Manning MarableA while ago, my good friend and colleague, Di Harvey from the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak gave me a copy of...

E-Mail Trauma

“Careers are made or broken by the soft skills that make you able to handle a very large workload.“- Merlin MannRecently we did a quick poll about how people engage with our e-news letter. We were interested to learn that 33% of the people who receive our e-news letter, and have chosen to receive it, don’t have time to click the links. Now clicking the links o...

Solution: Suprise Visits?

It is important to consider that Professor Munro did not recommend the removal of all frameworks and systems for managing and monitoring service quality in the UK. What she recommended however was a shift in focus away from “compliance” to what “really matters” – that being, whether or not children and families are actually being helped.In particular, Profe...

Warning! Scaffold With Care

Interestingly, those responsible for implementing recommendations of the Munro Review within the UK are now concerned that when shifting away from an over-reliance on “guidelines, targets and rules” that they not “kick away the scaffolding” without safe transition plans in place.Follow along the discussion in the UK and have a read of the minutes of the Munro Review Im...

Guidelines, Targets and Rules, Oh My!

If we were to track back in time, some very good reasons could be found that explain why certain systems and processes were established in Queensland for ensuring the quality of services that children, young people and families are entitled to receive. For instance: The system of licensing out-of-home care services, arose out of recommendations contained within the 1998-99 Forde Inquiry in...

Is The Tail Wagging Queensland\'s Child Protection System?

Let’s think about key features of the United Kingdom’s child protection system that were criticized in the recently completed review conducted by Professor Eileen Munro and how closely they resemble the image of “a tail wagging its dog”. Then let’s think about Queensland’s child protection system and ask ourselves, “Is the dog still wagging its tai...

10 Ways To Jump Start Your Professional Development

“Education isn’t for getting a job. It’s about developing yourself as a human being.”—Liz BerryIn an ideal world child and family welfare practitioners would be guaranteed to receive quality supervision on demand and unlimited access to professional development opportunities. Obviously this ideal is not possible and many practitioners struggle to re...

Who Wins According to the Munro Report?

The recently completed Munro Review of the United Kingdom’s child protection system found that the “demands of bureaucracy” had become so great that the capacity of child protection organisations and their staff to work directly with children and families was being hindered. Practitioners and managers told the review that the demands of observing statutory guidelines, mee...

The Age of Independence

“Uncomfortable truths are revealed when the most powerless find their voice.”Debbie KilroyComing of age is a concept regarding a milestone and is usually synonymous with celebration. Most coming of age is filled with excitement, particularly when it involves children reaching adulthood. However, for many Queensland children who have grown up in state care, com...

The Munro Campaign: The Journey Continues

The journey so far…* On 8th June 2010, PeakCare Queensland launched “The Munro Campaign” to comprehensively examine the implications for Queensland of the recently completed UK Review of Child Protection conducted by Professor Eileen Munro.* On 15th June 2010, in a post by Lorraine Dupree, PeakCare’s Policy and Research Manager – “The Munro Campaign: The...

Combined Voices Campaign Continues!

The story of Combined VoicesCombined Voices is the story of a small group of people coming together to express their alarm about the increasingly high rate of over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people within Queensland’s child protection system.It is the story of a small band of people joining together to share their grave concerns about t...

What does a British Bulldog and a Queensland Koala have in common?

Birth of the Munro CampaignIn June 2011, PeakCare Queensland commenced our Munro Campaign.Regular readers of Our Practice Blogs and Facebook will have already received some information about the Munro Campaign:...

What\'s Good For the Goose is Good For the Gander

“Every society gets the kind of criminal it deserves. What is equally true is that every community gets the kind of law enforcement it insists on.”- Robert KennedyAs our Acting Police Minister so eloquently stated today our Police Officers should be recognised by Queenslanders for their significant contribution to our community. Their role puts them at risk on a daily basi...

The Munro Campaign: Conspicuously Silent

“Silence is golden when it’s called for. Silence can be deadly when it’s not called for.”— Meryl RunionIn 2009 The National Framework For Protecting Australia’s Children was launched. The framework kicked off an Australian wide, call to action to better our policies, procedures and practices with vulnerable children, young people and their families. I&r...

The Difference Between Saying and Doing

To put it bluntly, I seem to have a whole superstructure with no foundation. But I’m working on the foundation.Marilyn MonroeAre our child protection systems superstructures without a solid foundation?As we introduced theMunro campaignlast week we outlined that Professor Eileen Munro had extensively explored the experiences of British children, young people and familie...

The Munro Campaign

The Monroe Munro Campaign – it’s not about Marilyn! Or is it?Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962) was one of the most celebrated actresses of all time. Born Norma Jeanne Mortenson, she was almost smothered to death at the age of two, sexually assaulted at the age of six and spent most of her childhood in a sequence of foster homes and orphanages. At the age of 36, she was...

The Monroe .... emmm, Munro Campaign!

The Monroe Munro Campaign – it’s not about Marilyn! Or is it?Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962) was one of the most celebrated actresses of all time. Born Norma Jeanne Mortenson, she was almost smothered to death at the age of two, sexually assaulted at the age of six and spent most of her childhood in a sequence of foster homes and orphanages. At the age of 36, she was...

The Cost of Not Paying the Price ...

In March this year I wrote a blog post regarding pay equity, “The price we pay when we won’t pay the price”. I’m revisiting it today because this is the National Day of Action for Pay Equity that I alluded to in my former post. Whilst there have been a couple of significant changes, the issues of pay equity are still largely unresolved and need to remain...

Still Sorry!

As a part of the PCQ CEO’s Breakfast held last Thursday (26/05/11) on National Sorry Day, Lindsay Wegener gave the opening address, asking whether Australia is doing enough to stop racism.Below please listen to his address andif you would like to read more check out his blog post,‘National Sorry Day- Are We Truly Sorry’....

Baby Babes

“The emotional, sexual, and psychological stereotyping of females begins when the doctor says: “It’s a girl.”—Shirley ChisholmEarlier this week, PeakCare staff were critically de-constructing a piece of current news. The article in question was from the Sydney Morning Herald, Tending to Children With the Bodies ofWomen. It definitely got me th...

Combined Voices Campaign

It was 26th May 2011 and a post, Are We Truly Sorry, was entered into PeakCare’s Practice Blogs about National Sorry Day. Sparked off by racist taunts that appeared on You Tube about a widely acclaimed recording artist and performer – a Torres Strait Islander woman – PeakCare called for our member agencies and others to stand with us in saying that we are sorry and...

National Sorry Day - are we truly sorry?

Thursday 26th May 2011 is National Sorry Day.Since 1998, this is the day of the year set aside for all Australians to collectively express our regret over the historical treatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.This date was chosen in commemoration of the Bringing Them Home Report being handed to the Federal Government on 26th May 1997.I was recently browsing through Y...

Permission to Perpetrate

Whilst May as Domestic Violence Prevention Month is drawing to a close, domestic violence isn’t. Its impact costs millions of Australians significant harm and costs the economy billions of dollars per annum. Many would argue abuse of power is at epidemic proportions.Yet we continuously fail to adequately address it. Why is that so?Whilst I don’t have the billion...

Dancing With Myself

“No comment” is a comment.”—George CarlinI have been dancing ballet for a year and a half. I love it. When I want to practice at home I usually do so in front of glass sliding doors that lead onto the balcony of the apartment that I live in. I do this because I can see my reflection and the sliding doors become like a mirror. The problem is that I need to...

Talk To Me ....

“What’s the point of being alive,” she said, “if you’re not going to communicate?“—Kurt VonnegutWell, here I am at PeakCare – the new Executive Director who has a thousand ideas running around in my head with most of those ideas containing the thought, “We must do something about this or something about that!”As someone wh...

Sold! Now What?

I don’t want to write anymore about why we need to embrace social media. Boring… That’s old news.I’m SOLD.What I am interested in is the next step. How are we going to use social media to help marginalised people? In Peak Care’s context how are we going to help people to support children and families to prevent child abuse and neglect? How can human services...

Workplace Violence

“While it is clear that organisations must confront, understand and do all they can to prevent violence and its consequences, it is inevitable that community welfare professionals will often have to deal with situations where violence is a possibility or a fact. “~AnonymousIn the late ’80′s I was working for a women’s organization, providingtherapeutic&n...

The paradox of Social Media

Yesterday I sat down to write a blog post about the challenges of social media at 10:30 in the morning. By 4:30 I had written over 1000 words and I was no closer to finishing the post than when I started. Every challenge of social media I attempted to extrapolate had an equal positive spin. The more I wrote the more confused I became. The challenges of social media did not sit with me. Trying to...

Are We De-professionalizing Child Protection?

A week or so ago I wrote a blog post that discussed some of my concerns about the implementation of the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children. This week I want to share some of my critical reflection that has arisen as a result of the practicum project I have been working on. Lynn Barratt and I have been looking at recruitment and retention issues for the child and family...

The Good News About Social Media

A fortnight ago – Wow! Has it been that long already? – I wrote a blog post about whether or not the Human Services Sector is resistant to innovation. This week I am going to try and sell social media. Ready for my spiel?Ten Ways Social media could help the Human Services Sector to improve how we do our work...

\"New Media\", Old Media - How Do We Use It?

One of the cool features of WordPress blogs is a snazzy little feature, called “clicks”. You find it under your overall blog stats and what it does is allow you to see which links people have clicked in your post. I am usually reluctant to reinvent the wheel when I am writing and so, rather than writing massive posts, will attempt to link my reader into further information or s...

After We Leave

Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we’ve put it in an impossible situation - Margaret MeadMargaret Mead makes an interesting point. The struggles of modern, Western families are further intensified by the lack of broader support structures and community in their lives. This also raises some inte...

The National Framework: Wolf In Sheep\'s Clothing?

I have had a great opportunity since starting my practicum placement with PeakCare, to look carefully at the National Framework For Protecting Australia’s Children. I started the learning process with considerable enthusiasm and interest, however, I found myself with increasing questions and concerns. I’d like to share my critical reflection with you in this post, and invite you to t...

Innovation Resistance

Social Media, it turns out, isn’t about aggregating audiences so you can yell at them about the junk you want to sell. Social Media, in fact, is a basic human need, revealed digitally online. We want to be connected, to make a difference, to matter, to be missed. We want to belong, and yes, we want to be led. ~ Seth GodinSocial media is being keenly disc...

Reinventing Feminism and Systemic Activism

I wanted to post this quick and quite interesting Ted Talk of Courtney Martin (of Feministing fame) who is chatting not only about the need for us to remain aware and conscious of inequity in our personal and professional lives – but also has something to say about systemic activism,disillusionmentand burn out. Have a listen and a think about how this conundrum translates into...

Where Have All The Social Workers Gone? Critical Reflection and Child Protection

“All efforts at self-transformation challenge us to engage in on-going, critical self-examination and reflection about practice, and about how we live in the world. This individual commitment, when coupled with engagement in collective discussion, provides a space for critical feedback which strengthens our efforts to change and make ourselves anew.” —bell hooksCrit...

Child Abuse and other Un-Natural Disasters

“All natural disasters are comforting because they reaffirm our impotence, in which, otherwise, we might stop believing. At times it is strangely sedative to know the extent of your own powerlessness.”~ Erica JongI have been very moved over the past weeks by the community spirit in response to the Queensland floods. It seems that our capacity for kindness and compassio...

Joining Up The Dots of Practice and Services

The current catch cry is for the service system to be joined up or integrated to better support families and children. If services are joined up what difference does this make to the work of the individuals working within that system?When we begin work with an organisation in community services we are told about client confidentiality, and the need to maintain client information i...

Professional Development: A Timely Idea!

“If you wish to achieve worthwhile things in your personal and career life, you must become a worthwhile person in your own self-development.”~ Brian TracyIt’s been a pretty exciting couple of weeks around PeakCare. Not only have we been coping with the aftermath of the flooding in Brisbane and Queensland wide, we have also been hard at work putting the finishing touche...

Giving

Although the above talk made by Jessica Jackley is not strictly speaking, about child protection, I believe it speaks volume about practice. I was going to write a little about practice frameworks today, and about how our framework influences and informs the way we view our work; the sadness, suffering and the sorts of problems and issues we confront every day, as part of child protection...

Strut Your Stuff!

Dear Child Protection Professionals,If you are reading this post, you have found PeakCare’s professional practice blog. Well done!We know how committed and keen our sector is to undertake and promote best practice through ongoing professional development. We also know how difficult it can be to get out of the office or away from your desk. Enter this blog as a creative PeakCare solut...

Whole Hearted Child Protection Work

I’ve been writing lately about vulnerability, sticking withthe discomfort of the feeling, and using it to guide more authentic and connected living. It occurs to me, that the capacity to sit with vulnerability and to have the courage to explore it, is foundational to reflective practice and in turn to healthy child protection work. Yet vulnerability is not encouraged or easily incorp...

Reclaiming Professional Supervision for High Performance

‘I hear and I forget’ ‘I see and I remember’ ‘I do and I understand’~ ConfuciusProfessional supervision is one of the most fundamental elements to improve professional standards, practice and performance in the workplace. It is essential for measuring sound decision-making, service delivery outcomes, ensuring evidence-based practice and staff ar...

Imposter Syndrome

There’s always that feeling of “Oh, God! One day they’ll find out that I really have no idea what I’m doing.” Samantha Mathis [Seventeen, June 1992] Some years back, I found myself in the uncomfortable position of sitting at my desk at work and realizing I felt frozen, unable to make the decision I was expected to make. The stakes were high; would I recommend the...

Exercising Mastery in Assertive Interactions: How assertive are you?

Ever heard yourself saying; “I wish I could have said more” or “Why didn’t I say that?” or “Why can’t they just listen to me?” or “I just want to run away and pretend it never happened.”Yes? Then chances are you were not as assertive as you could have been at the time in that particular situation.We often choose not to be assertive...