Central Queensland families better supported

Two leading specialists in child and family support service provision joined today to officially open vital new services to help vulnerable Central Queensland families.

Churches of Christ Care partnered with Act for Kids to launch two intensive family support services called Families Together, and Family and Child Connect, which cover the Mackay, Whitsunday and Isaac regions.

Churches of Christ Care Children, Youth and Families General Manager Jane Carter said the two services provide local families in need with the assistance and support they require.

“We are excited to be helping strengthen local families, which in turn increases child safety and creates stronger communities,” Ms Carter said.

Delivered by Churches of Christ Care, Families Together works with vulnerable families who have more complex needs to ensure they receive necessary support. This includes help to improve family functioning and wellbeing and ensure they are positively connected with their communities. A key focus of the service is to help families build capacity to safely care for and protect their children.

“This new service joins our network of intensive family support services, expands our early intervention and prevention focus and builds on our vision of assisting children and families to access the support they need at the time they need it,” Ms Carter said.

Act for Kids provides the free Family and Child Connect service to help with the challenges of parenthood. The service endeavours to provide advice, information and/or referrals to anyone interested in the safety and wellbeing of children and families. Anyone can contact Family and Child Connect on 13FAMILY (13 32 64) for advice and information, including parents, family members and community members.

Act for Kids Chief Executive Officer Dr Neil Carrington, speaking of the launch of the Family and Child Connect service, said these types of early prevention services had clear benefits for Central Queensland children and families.

“We are glad to be working alongside such wonderful community organisations and together, to be transforming our child and family support services in the area,” Dr Carrington said.

“Our own research has found that a third of respondents or 38% had experienced emotional abuse as a child and that number is just too high.”

“In 2014-15, emotional abuse accounted for 43% of substantiated child abuse cases and yet people still don’t seem to understand the effects emotional abuse can have on a child. At Act for Kids, we encourage everyone to play their part and speak up for children who don’t have a voice.”

Ms Carter said Churches of Christ Care is proud to actively link with other care services, churches, government, and other non-government organisations, such as Act for Kids, to deliver family support services.

“We are all working to make it easier for Central Queensland families to find the support they need in the toughest of times,” she said.

Families Together operates from Churches of Christ Care’s Mackay office at 17-19 Shakespeare Street, while Family and Child Connect is located at Act for Kids’ 33A Peel Street office. Both services are provided on behalf of the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services

Churches of Christ Care is one of the largest non-government providers of children, youth and family services in Queensland, providing foster and kinship care, residential and supported independent living services to approximately 2,800 children and young people each year who are under the care of the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services or at risk of being taken into care. A further 654 children and families are supported through its assessment and intervention services.

The new Families Together service join a growing number of early intervention services provided by Churches of Christ Care across Queensland.

Posted November 25, 2016 in News