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- Friday, 21st February 2020 -
The State Budget is due to be released on 28th April, around two months earlier than usual, and undoubtedly the Queensland Government and its various agencies are now well and truly embroiled in the argy-bargy of determining how and on what taxpayer dollars are best spent.

Operating as a combined force, PeakCare, the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak, the CREATE Foundation, Queensland Foster and Kinship Care and the Family Inclusion Network SEQ (Micah Projects) elected to exert our influence on the Government’s decision-making by sending this submission to Premier Palaszczuk, Treasurer Jackie Trad and Child Safety Minister Di Farmer. The submission states our collective recommendations about seven matters warranting focused attention in the budget which, if acted upon, will align well with the laudable high priority the Government has placed on Giving all our children a good start as featured within the list of Advancing Queensland’s Priorities.

Reference is also made within the submission to earlier correspondence sent to Premier Palaszczuk and members of her Cabinet urging the Government to prioritise the enhancement of support to be provided to young people in care during their transition to adulthood, building on initiatives already commenced, but which can and should be improved, in relation to the Next Steps Plus program, the extension of carer payments (as advocated for, amongst other matters, by the Home Stretch Campaign) and other whole-of-government activities.  

You are invited to read the submissions and share your views, anonymously if you prefer, by entering comments here about any of the matters discussed in either or both submissions. Similar to most governments, the Palaszcuk Government will be looking to gauge the strength of opinion held by stakeholders and the general public about where they should be investing resources. Take up the opportunity to let the government officials who monitor our blogs know your views. Our collective voice can be formidable. Do not be silent – make some noise!

Youth justice - the eyes of the world are upon us

In response to repeated recommendations by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child that Australia consider raising the age of criminal responsibility to an internationally acceptable level, in November 2018, the Council of Attorneys-General, which consists of Attorneys-General from the Australian Government, all states and territories, and the New Zealand Minister for Justice, agreed that “it would be appropriate to examine whether to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 10 years of age”. The Council also announced that “a working group will be established to review this matter”. It’s clear that the eyes of the world are now upon us! Look at this map that illustrates the age of criminal responsibility by country and you will see starkly represented why the eyes of the world are not pleased with what they are seeing!
Australia’s review will include a desktop assessment that draws from a range of government and non-government resources including relevant international reports, agreements and standards; overseas experience; contemporary Australian inquiries (and government responses), reviews and experience; and relevant evidence-based research. The working group are calling for submissions, by COB Friday, 28th February. Click here to obtain details about lodging your submission.


Celebrating International Care Day

Care Day held today, Friday, 21st February is the largest international celebration of children and young people with a care experience. Care Day is about showing support, breaking stigma around out-of-home care, and showcasing the accomplishments of children and young people with a care experience with the wider community. Everyone can be involved in #CareDay20 by posting the hashtag on social media, creating messages and sharing the word about Care Day. 


International Mother Language Day is today, 21st February - and funding to support language acquisition and heritage

Last year was the UN Year of Indigenous Languages, aimed at raising awareness of the value of Indigenous languages across the world. Following in those footsteps, today, 21st February 2020 is marked by the UN as International Mother Languages Day, for recognising that with the loss of language so too are lost opportunities, traditions, memory, unique modes of thinking and expression, as well as the basic right to cultural integrity. In Australia, only 13 out of hundreds of once-thriving pre-colonisation Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages are still acquired by children. Indigenous Language Centres play a vital role in preserving disappearing languages in Australia, as does the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies and the First Languages Australia project. Find out more about the catalogued Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages in your region as well as around Australia, and why it's important to revive ancestral languages, written from a young Aboriginal woman's perspective.

The federal government is currently accepting Community Languages Multicultural Grants funding applications, aimed at building the capacity of community language schools to deliver quality language education. Projects and initiatives should: support the maintenance, development and acquisition of languages other than English, connect young Australians to the languages and cultures of their community, and enhance cross-cultural awareness and respect for cultural diversity. Applications from organisations applying as a consortium will be prioritised for funding. Applicants are encouraged to seek endorsement for their proposed project from either the national peak body or a state and territory peak body relating to community languages. Find out more and applyApplications close 11pm Friday, 6th March.


Free public training for NGOs on the Human Rights Act 

The Queensland Human Rights Commission is holding a public session of the Introduction to the Human Rights Act training on Monday, 25th February from 9:30am to 11:30am at Room 3, 111 George St, Brisbane. Interested staff of NGOs and community organisations in the child, family and welfare sector are required to contact to register for free places at this training until capacity is reached. QHRC will also be offering public sessions outside the CBD on dates to be advised.

Scholarships applications for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to attend National Early Years Summit 2020 closing Monday, 25th February

ARACY's National Early Years Summit 2020 will bring together leading thinkers and change-makers to look ahead and ask, What should a blueprint for young children’s wellbeing look like? The Summit will involve building on a knowledge of what works for kids, highlighting what information we lack, and how to acquire it. It will also include thought and advocacy on how best to apply that knowledge to get the best results for children with limited resources. To ensure the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are heard at the Summit, the Ian Potter Foundation has provided funding for a limited number of scholarships for people identifying as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. Successful applicants will receive a free-of-charge Summit registration valued at up to $979 plus a contribution of up to $500 towards travel and accommodation. Applications must address how scholarship registration will help the applicant and how it would contribute toward the Summit's goals. Applications close 5pm, Monday, 25th February. Apply online.

Increased parental leave for families experiencing traumatic births

The federal government will increase parental leave entitlements to support families dealing with traumatic birth situations after the inflexible and detrimental nature of current entitlements was publicised on ABC's 7.30 Report. Entitlements for families who have experienced traumatic births resulting in complications requiring hospitalisation, premature birth, and stillbirth or infant death will be extended to a maximum of 12 months unpaid parental leave. Arrangements will also be more flexible, with parents able to go back to work while their babies are in hospital and retake leave when their babies are ready to go home. Legislation is anticipated to be introduced to parliament during the autumn sitting. 

Child-friendly version of Children's Report 2019

The Australian Human Rights Commission has released a version of the Children's Report 2019 especially for children and young people with simplified language and imagery. The report explains what the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child is and what rights children have in Australia, as well as covering the findings of the original Report and links to further resources.

Free webinar on collaborative practice in child and family welfare

Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) has released a paper co-produced with Emerging Minds on strategies for developing collaborative practice in the child and family welfare sector. To introduce the research the paper is based on, CFCA will deliver a free webinar on Collaborative practice in child and family welfare: Building practitioners’ competence on Wednesday, 18th March at 1pm QLD time, which will outline three key strategies for developing collaborative competence as well as a case study of a partnership between child protection and a community outreach service for high-risk young people in Queensland to illustrate how collaborative strategies can be applied in practice. Find out more and register.

New edition of TOY online course commences 2nd March

Are you interested in bringing older adults and young children together to share knowledge, skills, values and have fun? The six-week free online course Together Old and Young: An Intergenerational Approach explores intergenerational practice with young children (0 – 8 years old) and older adults (65+ years old) with practical ways to create opportunities for good quality and sustainable intergenerational learning activities. The course is relevant for early childhood education and care practitioners, primary school teachers (working with 4 to 8 year olds), social care practitioners and volunteers working with older adults and community development workers. Find out more and register for the next session commencing Monday, 2nd March. 

Free promotional materials for events registered in support of National Families Week

Organisations who register an event in support of National Families Week 2020, to be held 15th to 21st May, will receive a selection of promotional materials to assist in celebrating their events, including posters, notepads, balloons, paint sheets and stickers. The materials will be sent to organisations in mid-April to prepare for National Families Week. The aim of the Week is to celebrate the vital role that families play in Australian society and reflect on the critical role that families play in teaching, supporting and nurturing children especially as they grow. Register an event to receive the free promotional materials or find an event near you.

Free online child aware training for practitioners

Being ‘child aware’ involves building an organisational and workplace culture that embraces a range of practices and attitudes that aim to keep the ‘child in mind’. Emerging Minds has developed a free online course to support child aware practice for professionals in the health, social or community service setting who work with children (aged 0–12 years), with adults who are parents/carers, or with families. The course aims to enhance understanding about the impact that adult problems may have on children and to support practitioners to think about children early in any contact with a parent. Find out more and register

Each week, PeakCare publishes a 'Thumbs Up' and/or a 'Thumbs Down' about matters that have come to our attention and draw either our commendation or condemnation. If there are matters that you think are worthy of one or other of these acknowledgements, email and we will consider publishing them.

A big THUMBS UP to our colleagues from the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak, CREATE Foundation, Queensland Foster and Kinship Care and Family Inclusion Network SEQ (Micah Projects) with whom we collaborated in producing our joint submission about State budget priorities – a very fulfilling feat!

Best Practice in Case Management
Brisbane - Monday, 24th to Tuesday, 25th February
Presented by Amovita

This training presentation provides participants with a new way of thinking of how to effectively engage clients in the case management process. It renews case management language to bring about a fresh approach in all aspects of assessment, planning, monitoring and evaluation. It shows participants how to work with reluctant and resistant clients, understand what to focus on in the case process when clients are stuck or unmotivated to make necessary. The training supports participants to engage effective self-care when working in a case management environment and ensures that participants leave the training thinking creatively about the case management process through contemporary best practice approaches. Find out more and register.

Kinship Care Forum 2020
Brisbane - Wednesday, 26th February
Presented by PeakCare, QATSICPP, CREATE and IFYS

Building on the successful 2019 Kinship Care Forum hosted by PeakCare, a follow up forum is being organised. The Kinship Care Forum is aimed at progressing the national agenda to raise awareness about the lack of recognition and support for extended family members caring for children, and find a way forward to influence national policy in recognising the rights and unique support needs of these children and their kinship carers. Megan Mitchell, the National Children's Commissioner will be in attendance, and the research about young kinship carers attendees heard about at the first forum is now finalised in a report which will be launched on the day. A range of other speakers involved in kinship care work and research will also be attending. Find out more and register.

No Scaredy Cats
Brisbane - Thursday, 27th February
Presented by Parentshop

The No Scaredy Cats™ workshop is based on three underlying perspectives: first, by having an understanding of how anxiety develops parents can counter its progress, second, parents can take a preventative role in the development of anxiety problems, third, there are practical steps parents can take to build resilience. Find out more and register.

Focused Psychological Strategies for Social Workers
Brisbane - Thursday, 27th to Friday, 28th February
Presented by Australian Association of Social Workers

The Focused Psychological Strategies workshop offers a comprehensive and accessible exploration of the broad and eclectic strategies contained in the Medicare protocol. Beginning with a brief historical overview of mental health interventions, the workshop explores the theoretical underpinnings, diagnostic categories and treatment strategies of the four main therapeutic modalities of treatment. This two day workshop includes a colourful slide presentation, individual experiential exercises, pair-work and group discussions; and the opportunity to develop and consolidate your therapeutic skills and knowledge. Find out more and register.

Resources for Reflection: Enhancing our conversations with strengths-based tools
Brisbane - Thursday, 5th March
Presented by Lighthouse Resources

For anyone who has an interest in enhancing conversations within your work environment, whether you are working with clients, students or colleagues. In this highly interactive workshop participants will experiment with a wide range of cards and other tools for opening up meaningful conversations with children, youth, families, adults and colleagues. This workshop will offer participants a number of immediately useful ideas for the use of these tools within a range of practice contexts. Find out more and register.

Best practice investigative interviewing of children and young people Practice Paper
Brisbane - Wednesday, 11th March
Presented by Child Protection Practitioners Association of Queensland (CPPAQ) 

Children and young people are capable of being reliable witnesses in an investigation if they are interviewed well. Professor Martine Powell from the Griffith University Criminology Institute will deliver the CPPAQ March Practice Paper at 5.30pm in Brisbane on the topic of evidence-based best practice for investigative interviewing of children and young people. The presentation will address best practice including: guidelines for establishing rapport; issues related to children’s suggestibility and assessing credibility; practical strategies for structuring the interview, lowering inhibition and eliciting accurate and detailed disclosures. Professor Powell is also the Founding Director of the Centre for Investigative Interviewing at Griffith University, which recently released this free video guide on how to be a good questioner of children - ensuring children's rights to be heard during investigations into abuse and neglect are upheld. Find out more and register.

Attachment Styles in Practice
Brisbane - Monday, 23rd March

Presented by Compass Seminars

This workshop takes a deeper look into how attachment styles can be used in therapeutic settings by offering a practical and sophisticated exposition for evidence-based assessment, formulation, planning and treatment that is sure to transform attachment-focused interventions. This one-day workshop shows how to work successfully with emotional and behavioural problems rooted in deficient early attachments. It introduces the Attachment Style Interview (ASI), an evidence-based accessible instrument that reveals how attachment disorders may be properly conceptualised, to inform more targeted planing and treatment. Early bird pricing available until 10th February. Find out more and register.

First Up: client response training for administration staff
Brisbane - Thursday, 26th March
Presented by Encompass Family and Community

This workshop equips and supports administration workers in their role of providing ‘first-up’ responses to clients and members of the public who present in person at reception or over the phone. Participants consider how to interact calmly and safely with people who are presenting in a state of crisis or affected by alcohol or drugs, including how to convey empathy while encouraging the client to contain their anger or upset or behaviour. A workshop for all admin workers who may be ‘first-up’ in responding helpfully in difficult situations or helping to de-escalate potential crises. Find out more and register.

2020 QLD Youth Sector Forum
Brisbane - Friday, 15th May
Presented by Youth Affairs Network Queensland (YANQ)

YANQ has announced the 2020 QLD Youth Sector Forum, the first state-wide youth sector gathering since 2014. The Forum will explore the complex environment of the youth services sector through unpacking new research and thinking in youth work practices, workforce development innovations and community and government service provision priorities. Sharing of ideas, knowledge, possibilities and solutions across the human services sector will provide an exciting and challenging Forum program. Sector organisations and academics are invited to develop lead workshop breakout sessions in areas of interest/expertise. Each workshop will run for 1 hour with time being split between presentations (up to 30 mins) and facilitated discussion (around 30mins). The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 4th March. Find out more.

2020 Not for Profit People Conference
Melbourne - Monday, 24th February to Tuesday, 25th February

This is Australia's biggest event focused on how to attract, manage and retain the best people for the NFP sector. A motivating line up of speakers has already been announced, with four 2-hour workshops also locked in as part of the diverse program. Most of the 15 parallel sessions showcase the best in studies from within the NFP sector, with a dash of expertise from the private sector to seed new ideas and perspectives. Find out more and register.

What is child-focused supervision in adult-focused services and how does it work?
Webinar - Wednesday, 26th February

This free webinar co-produced by Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) and Emerging Minds will explore child-focused supervision practices and will present other initiatives used by managers, supervisors and practitioners in creating an organisational context to support child-focused practice in adult services. This webinar will especially assist practitioners who work with parents in adult-focused services. Find out more and register.

National Indigenous Youth Empowerment Summit 2020
Cairns - Tuesday, 25th to Friday, 28th February

This four-day summit will share knowledge with the aim to improve services and outcomes for Indigenous children and their families. With five streams including child protection, social and emotional wellbeing and youth justice, delegates have the opportunity to learn from, and network with, over 300 sector leaders, innovators, leaders and frontline workers to collaborate on strategies towards empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people. Find out more and register.


Changing Lives, Changing Communities Round Two
Brisbane - Tuesday, 3rd to Wednesday, 4th March

Come along and work together at this forum hosted by QCOSS, taking your place to drive change in your community. Across Queensland, communities are looking to work together to make a difference, to create a place where everyone contributes, matters and belongs. You are invited to come along to work with your neighbours and colleagues to make your community the best it can be. This is an invitation to come along and work together, taking your place to drive change in your community. Find out more and register.

Legal and Practical Response to Child Abuse QLD-specific
Webinar - Thursday, 4th March

This two-hour webinar by In Safe Hands assists educators, organisations and individuals to comply with their National Quality Framework and other legislative requirements and meet duty of care obligations regarding child protection. It is designed to be used for induction of new staff, and as a foundation or refresher course for those who have not completed recent child protection training. Find out more and register.


Blue Card information session
Brisbane - Wednesday, 4th March

A free session for employers to overview their obligations under the blue card system and provide an opportunity to clarify any issues regarding blue card application and assessment processes. Find out more and register.

National Early Years Summit 2020
Melbourne - Wednesday, 11th to Thursday, 12th March

ARACY's National Early Years Summit 2020 will bring together leading thinkers and change-makers to look ahead and ask: What should a blueprint for young children’s wellbeing look like? Working together for their first 1000 days and beyond. This work and discussion will begin a ten-year endeavour to enhance understanding and bring together frontline workers with children, academics, government policy makers, parents, and others. The Summit will involve building on a knowledge of what works for kids, highlighting what information we lack, and how we can acquire it. It will also include thought and advocacy on how best to apply that knowledge to get the best results for our children with the limited resources available to governments, organisations, and families. A draft program has been released, with more details to come. A preliminary list of Thought Leaders and Panellists has also been announced, with more to be announced in coming weeks. The Thought Leaders will make a contribution by guiding the work of the Summit. Special rates are available for early bird registrations and Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY) Members. Find out more and register.


National Social Role Valorisation Conference 2020
Brisbane - Friday, 27th to Saturday, 28th March

The first ever Australian Social Role Valorisation Association (ASRVA) national conference will be held in Brisbane in 2020. The vision of ASRVA is that all people, including those that are marginalised and disenfranchised, are enabled to be perceived positively and have good lives. The foundation of social role valorisation (SRV) is a sense of social justice, leadership development, and working for change with individuals, services, systems and citizens. The ASRVA Conference will be reinforcing the spirit of a community of practice through a mixture of speakers, discussion and activities, and will be grounded, focussing on application, and using a range of activities and styles to better match varied learning preferences. View the date claimer, follow ASRVA on Facebook or contact to be kept updated on Conference news and be notified when registrations open.


Information Linkages & Capacity Building (ILC) Workshop
Roma - Tuesday, 28th April

Free ILC Workshops hosted by the Inclusion Ready Project will help attendees: understand the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and the important business opportunities it presents; appreciate the economic and social benefits of inclusion and the important role inclusion plays in driving productivity growth; identify key opportunities for inclusion and inclusive projects; design & build ILC grant projects; incorporate critical success factors into ILC project design; and collaborate and network with potential project partners. Find out more and register.

2020 Community Legal Centres Queensland State Conference
Brisbane - Thursday, 30th April to Friday, 1st May

The conference is a fantastic opportunity to meet with a diverse range of people from across the state including centre directors and lawyers, stakeholders, social workers, volunteers and decision makers. There will be a wide variety of panel discussions, presentations and workshops relevant to both the community legal sector and the wider legal community. The conference provides delegates with the chance to network with other people in the field, broaden and strengthen their skills and enhance and develop their knowledge. Early bird discounts available until 26th March. Find out more and register.

NDS Queensland Conference 2020: Futures in Disability
Brisbane - Thursday, 7th to Friday, 8th May

With a rich diversity of speakers, delegates and exhibitors, the program will encourage visionary thinking across the disability sector. Registrations for the conference are due to open mid February. If you are interested in attending, register your interest here.

Visit our Events page for further opportunities in the sector.

Clinician (part-time) - Bravehearts

Bravehearts is seeking a part-time (3 days/week) Clinician working out of the Springwood office to provide support and counselling for children, young people and families who may have experienced or are at risk of experiencing, child sexual assault. The role also includes administration associated with processing counselling service receipts, telephone and/or online counselling, undertaking psychological assessments, maintaining case notes, delivering training and undertaking regular supervision. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis so interested applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to avoid missing out. Find out more and apply

© 2020 PeakCare Queensland Inc. All rights reserved.

PeakCare Queensland
PO Box 159
Paddington Qld 4064

Click here to apply to become a PeakCare member or supporter. Membership with PeakCare will ensure your organisation is involved in the development of the child protection sector. 

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