Child Wellbeing Program

Child Wellbeing Program

Open Support’s Domestic and Family Violence (DFV) Program has expanded its crisis accommodation and support service and introduced a Child Wellbeing Program as part of its commitment to women and families fleeing often life-threatening situations in their family home.

“The Child Wellbeing Program has become a reality thanks to funding via a grant from the Property Industry Foundation. This funding enabled Open Support to engage an external consultant to undertake review and build the framework, model and modules required to implement the program,” says Open Support General Manager, Gary Sillett.

The program is overseen and run by Open Support’s DFV Coordinator Sharon Sutherland. A pilot of the program was implemented in early 2018 and, for the first time, it enabled children of the women who access our DFV services to receive appropriate support as clients in their own right.

The program is underpinned by practice that supports the ongoing psychosocial, emotional and cognitive development of children. It encompasses the best practice principles of trauma-informed care, a child-centred approach and a strengths-based philosophy.

In doing so, it supports children to recover from trauma by encouraging their individual strengths, enhancing their relationship with their mother and responding to their individual needs in an age appropriate way.

“We are grateful to the Property Industry Foundation for providing the funding to ensure this much-needed focus on the children as clients is part of the full spectrum of services that Open Support will provide over the next three years,” Mr Sillett adds.

2016-17 Snapshot

  • 25 families assisted in 2016-17, including 38 children under-12
  • 63 total clients
  • Average length of client stay 62 days
  • 12 nationalities. 36% from non-English-speaking backgrounds (NESB)
  • 6 clients without access to income due to visa status
  • Average length of stay of these clients 121 days.

Open Minds, Open Hearts, Open Hands - Open Support

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