By now it is apparent that to survive the pressures we are facing over oncoming weeks and months unprecedented efforts will be required of us all – not only for the sake of the children, young people and families who are the recipients of our organisations' services but for all Queensland children, young people and families. Our community will be looking to us to provide the moral leadership, ingenuity and dedication in ensuring that children, young people and families are kept safe and well.
Our sector may not possess the medical expertise needed to combat the virus and slow down its spread, but we do hold the expertise when it comes to promoting the emotional health and well-being of children, young people and their families. We are the ones who have expertise when it comes to outreaching to communities to hold them safe and in helping them in their recovery from disasters. We all have an invaluably significant role to play in kicking the Coronavirus – it may not be in finding a cure or vaccine, but it will be in curbing its social impact.
In this edition of eNews, we are updating you about strategies being pursued under the umbrella of the three C’s – Communication, Collaboration and Compassion – all essential commodities in fighting the scourge of this virus.
Communication – how to receive up-to-date and accurate information
Communication – frank exchange of advice about concerns and solutions
A critical factor in dealing with the virus is to ensure that our communication channels are kept open and up-to-date. Over recent days, PeakCare’s eNews subscription list has more than trebled and the number of subscribers now exceeds 10,000 and is continuing to grow. If you have not yet made sure that all of your staff and others associated with the delivery of your organisation’s services have become subscribers, do so now. Do not rely on one or two people within your organisation disseminating information after it is sent to you. This can cause delays in the information being distributed to your staff and others, and in the event that these people become indisposed, prevent its dissemination in total. To subscribe, go to the home page of PeakCare’s website, scroll down and follow the instructions – it takes a few seconds only.
PeakCare will continue to distribute information including communiques from the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women, as it becomes available. The information we distribute will have a particular focus on child protection and related service delivery to children, young people and families.
You do not need to work for a PeakCare Member organisation to subscribe to eNews. No one should miss out on receiving this information. All special editions of eNews addressing matters of relevance to the Coronavirus are posted on this page of PeakCare’s website. Regularly review this page and the websites you will find listed there for updated information and advice.
It is also recommended that you regularly visit Community Door to review the information posted there about a broader range of matters of interest to the community services sector.
PeakCare, along with other peaks and representative groups, is liaising closely with the Government and its various departments. Today, we were notified that Child Safety Minister Di Farmer will be chairing weekly teleconferences with key stakeholder groups including PeakCare. PeakCare commends Minister Farmer for taking this initiative in making use of this forum to both directly communicate with stakeholders about decisions being made by the Government and to listen and respond to questions, emerging concerns and recommended solutions. Minister Farmer has expressed a commitment to making sure that nothing is being overlooked.
Not everyone can participate in these forums. Everyone can however make their questions, concerns and suggestions known to PeakCare and we will be your voice. To this end, you are invited to email PeakCare’s Executive Director, Lindsay Wegener (email@example.com) succinctly stated questions, issues of concern to you and your organisation, and/or recommendations about actions that could be taken to improve our sector’s capacity to deal with the impact of the virus. The content of your emails will be entered into a register that will be posted on PeakCare’s website along with the responses to the matters raised as they are generated.
PeakCare encourages all our eNews subscribers - no matter what job you may have or where or for whom you work – to take up this opportunity.
Communication – talk to us
In addition to emailing us your questions, concerns and recommended solutions, PeakCare will be setting up regular times for you to communicate with us and each other via Zoom. If you wish to be invited to participate in these discussions, please email your name, position title, name of your organisation and contact details (email address, phone number/s) to Anushri Bellary (firstname.lastname@example.org) by no later than 1st April. The arrangements we make for these discussions will depend on the number of people who wish to join in on these discussions.
Collaboration - do not go it alone
As time progresses, it is unlikely that any organisation will be able to ‘go it alone’ in dealing with this crisis. Especially at local levels, effective collaboration across agencies within and across both the government and non-government sectors will become an essential tool. Now is the time to re-evaluate your organisation’s contingency and continuity plans to incorporate steps that may be needed to share and pool resources to keep essential services operating. Make use of the regional and local planning forums now being used to facilitate these discussions, make sure your organisation is represented on these forums by people who are authorised to make decisions, and make sure you are liaising closely with your DCSYW contract managers about any difficulties you are forecasting and any solutions you think may work.
Compassion - looking out for each other and those around you
We are now in a stressful time and all will be coping with this as best we can. It will be important to predict that there may be times when parents of children in your care may seem to be demanding or aggressive – it will be their way of expressing their concerns about the safety and well-being of their children and the frustration of being unable to be present to protect them. The bravado of young people in appearing to flaunt social distancing protocols and the hygiene practices you are attempting to implement will often be masking secret fears they have for themselves and others. Displays of frayed tempers and frustration are likely to emerge in your dealings with colleagues – it won’t be personal. Keep a check on each other, understand why these behaviours are occurring, be re-assuring and draw on your reservoirs of good humour and compassion.
Free online learning for disability workforce around staying healthy during COVID-19
Disability Services Consulting (DSC) has released a free online learning module to assist disability workers keep themselves and the people they support healthy. The 30-minute online learning module is aligned with the NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Framework and includes information about why people with disability could be more vulnerable to infection, practical key steps to reduce rates of transmission, application of the NDIS Code of Conduct to infection control, and understanding risks and responsibilities. Find out more.
Free 12-month CCIQ membership
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) recognises many employers are facing complex HR situations at the moment, and is offering a complimentary 12-month subscription to its Business Essentials membership ($792 value) for new applications until Tuesday, 31st March. Membership includes unlimited HR helpline advice, Modern Award (pay rate) updates, free registration to all webinars, policy and procedure templates, member-only news, videos and downloads and more. Find out more.
Human Rights in the context of child protection
PeakCare is working with the Queensland Human Rights Commission to arrange an information session, via webinar, about the new Human Rights Act 2019 - tailored specifically to the child protection sector. Further details and information about registration will be provided as soon as available. In the meantime, the Commission is keen to include real-world child protection scenarios you experience in your work in their session. Can you please consider any situations you have come across in your work which potentially impact on human rights, which might be good to include in the discussion. See the guide to developing scenarios provided by the Commission, which has some relevant examples. Increasing the diversity and variety of scenarios will really add depth and enhance the benefits for participants. Send to email@example.com, thank you in anticipation.
Keep an eye on changing dates for scheduled events
Workers are reminded to keep an eye on training, conferences, awards and dinners and professional development booked for the upcoming months, as many dates will be postponed and some events cancelled. Training delivered by PeakCare's Members has been affected, with notice that workshops by Encompass Family and Community will be postponed from 23rd April, upcoming workshops by Lighthouse Resources will be rescheduled to July onward, and all face-to-face meetings and training by AASW postponed to later in the year. Training by Compass Seminars remains unaffected. If unclear be sure to contact the event coordinator for clarifications.
Keynote speakers announced for QHYC's Platform 1225
Comedian and author Corey White has been announced to headline and MC Queensland Youth Housing Coalition (QYHC)'s annual forum Platform 1225 on Tuesday, 17th November at the Grand Chancellor Hotel in Brisbane. Corey joins an impressive line-up of advocates, academics, young people and practitioners who are committed to social justice, including Dr Lindy Annakin, lead writer of the out-of-home care chapter of the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and researcher on whistleblowing in the public interest; Dr Alistair Ping, Adjunct Professor at the Queensland University of Technology’s Graduate School of Business; and Dr Kristy Muir, CEO of the Centre for Social Impact and a Professor of Social Policy at UNSW Sydney Business School. A panel of young people will speak to their lived experience on issues affecting their communities, including Lane Brooks, a 23 year-old Mandandanji man who is passionate about enacting change. In 2020, the focus of Platform 1225 will be Truth, advocacy and systemic reform, with an understanding that colonisation must be addressed when discussing systemic reform. Presentations will consider what can be done today to make sure the previous patterns of history are not repeated, and how to ensure ethical practice remains a key focus for organisations and government. Tickets start from $65 for students and $120 for non-student QYHC Members. Find out more and register.
CREATE Your Future Grants available now
The 2020 grants round for CREATE Your Future is now open. The grants are awarded to successful applicants who are clubCREATE Members aged 15-25 years with a statutory care experience. The categories available are: Education and Training (up to $3,000); Driving Lessons (up to $1,000); IT (preselected hardware); Travel and Conferences (up to $3,000). Applications are required to contain a copy of the applicant's learner permit for Driving Lessons, two written personal reference (from a teacher, case worker, CREATE Worker, employer, former carer or case worker or other adult that the applicant selects) and written quotations for equipment, course fees, goods or services that support the grant application. No quotations are required for applying for a laptop. Applications must be lodged using this form and lodged by email to CYFgrants@create.org.au, completed online or a hardcopy mailed to CYFGrant Scheme - CREATE FOUNDATION, PO Box 105, Spring Hill, QLD, 4004. Applications close 5pm Friday, 8th May.
Free professional development to support delivery of culturally appropriate care
Diversicare's Multicultural Advisory Service (MAS) is government-funded professional development to support community care services to provide culturally appropriate care to people with disability under 65 and carers from culturally and linguistically diverse communities. MAS training topics include: cross cultural communication, culturally inclusive services, working effectively with interpreters, workplace culture and how to provide holistic care. Find out more.
NAIDOC Week grants open
NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for communities to come together to celebrate the histories, cultures and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. NAIDOC Week 2020 will be held 5th to 12th July, with the theme Always Was, Always Will Be. Funding is now open for communities and organisations to help meet the costs of local NAIDOC activities such as flag raising ceremonies, family days, art exhibitions and other cultural activities to be held during NAIDOC Week, with preference to be given to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants. Applications close Monday, 30th March at 7pm (8pm AEDT).
Free advice for women's shelters on HSQF compliance
Women's shelters that need to complete Human Services Quality Framework (HSQF) activities such as self-assessment, audit preparation or post-audit continuous improvement are encouraged to contact QCOSS for free HSQF support. One-on-one support, online learning, templates and supporting documents, as well as access to a collaborative group, are available. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to talk with the QCOSS team.
New online hub for young women with disability
Our Place is a new online hub created by Women with Disabilities Australia for women and girls with disability. The hub includes informative and educational resources on individual rights, how women and girls can advocate for themselves and others and lead political activism, how to make proactive and healthy life choices, how to address issues around consent in relationships, health, gender, sexuality, where to find help, and much more.
PeakCare's advice regarding COVID-19
Keep yourself updated with the latest on the pandemic by accessing PeakCare's COVID-19 Resource page. The page contains a host of useful resources on speaking with children about the illness, where to reference helpful advice regarding workforce issues, as well as practical advice on health and hygiene. To ensure you receive the latest updates without delay, subscribe to eNews by replying SUBSCRIBE ME to this email.
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.
No Scaredy Cats
Tweed Heads - Wednesday, 22nd April
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.
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.
Introduction to the Nurtured Heart Approach
Brisbane - Monday, 20th July
Presented by Lighthouse Resources
The Nurtured Heart Approach is a simple framework which nurtures and grows a child’s positive sense of self. All children who have been introduced to this approach flourish and learn to appreciate what is great about them. This workshop will encourage participants to change the way we look at challenging behaviours and increase awareness and understanding of relationships. Through an introduction to the Nurtured Heart Approach, the workshop will provide powerful tools to improve not only how children and young people views themselves, but also the world around them, so they can embrace themselves and embrace life. Find out more and register.
Key Skills in Family Therapy
Brisbane - Thursday, 26th to Friday, 27th November
Presented by Compass Seminars
This two-day workshop is aimed at practitioners who work with children, young people, adults, couples, families, and/or organisations supporting clients with mental health issues. This workshop aims to introduce participants to core Family Therapy concepts and broaden practitioners understanding of how to view “the client’s problem”, as well as provide practical skills and interventions for use with the client groups with which they work, built on theoretical constructs from systemic, structural, solution focused and narrative family therapy models to teach core thinking and interviewing skills in family therapy. Find out more and register.
Psychologist or Social Worker - Act for Kids
Act for Kids is seeking a full time, fixed term (until 9th April 2021), Psychologist or Social Worker for the Townsville office. The role is classified at SCHADS Award Level 6.1 - 6.3. The role aims to: provide an outstanding therapeutic service to children, young people and their families in the Therapy & Education Services team; encourage and strengthen supportive relationships with adult caregivers; enhance psychosocial outcomes for children impacted by trauma; and work with other professionals and agencies to enhance client outcomes. Applications close Wednesday, 25th March. Find out more and apply.
Family Support Practitioner (Townsville) - Act for Kids
Act for Kids is seeking a full time fixed term (until 31st December 2021) Family Support Practitioner to be based in Ingham, Ayr, Charters Towers or Townsville, classified at SCHADS Award Level 4. The role is centred around delivering an outreach model of family case-management programs to families, caregivers, kids and young people and facilitating social learning, community connectedness, good health and well-being. Applications close Wednesday, 25th March. Find out more and apply.
Director, Occasional Care Service - Micah Projects
Micah Projects is seeking a part time (51.6 hrs/fortnight), fixed term (until 31st December with possibility of extension) qualified Director for the Occasional Care Service at the fee-free Wellspring Children and Families Hub. The role is responsible for the development and delivery of a high-quality and flexible service that is responsive to the needs of individual children and their families and is classified at CSA Level 6. Applications close 5pm, Thursday 26th March. Find out more and apply.
National Manager, Children and Families - yourtown
yourtown is seeking to fill the newly created role of a permanent full time National Manager, Children and Families based at the Milton office. This is a senior management responsible for leading the delivery of programs which achieve high quality outcomes for children and families. The role will facilitate consistent practice and service delivery, especially in relation to case management and outcome measurement frameworks, across all programs. Leading programs across geographically dispersed locations, the role will play a key part in the development and implementation of program theories and service models and identify and develop opportunities to deepen and grow the impact of yourtown's programs. Applications close Sunday, 29th March. Find out more and apply.
Women and Family Advocate, Scenic Rim - yourtown
yourtown is seeking a casual rostered fixed term (for three months) Women and Family Advocate working out of the Scenic Rim Region of Queensland. The role provides individual, family and group support planning to women, young people and children who are accommodated at the yourtown refuge. The role is classified at Bipers Class 51, Grade 7 and it is a genuine occupational requirement under s25 of the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act that the role is performed by a female. The role works a rotating shift work roster, 8am-4pm one week and 10am-6pm the next Monday to Friday and approximately 1 Saturday in every three. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis so apply now to ensure you don't miss out. Find out more and apply.
Domestic and Family Violence Counsellor, Scenic Rim - yourtown
yourtown is seeking a permanent part time (4 days/week) Domestic and Family Violence Counsellor working out of the Scenic Rim region of Queensland. The role works from a strengths based, trauma informed case management model to provide counselling interventions and referrals to women who are accommodated at our refuge. This role also provides outreach support which involves following up residents who have exited and external services to ensure the women are receiving the support they need and providing court support when required. The role is classified at Bipers Class 52, Grade 8 and it is a genuine occupational requirement under s25 of the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act that the role is performed by a female. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis so apply now to ensure you don't miss out. Find out more and apply.
Senior Employment Consultant - yourtown
yourtown is seeking a full time Senior Employment Consultant for the Transition to Work service based at Kingston. The role provides tailored employment services to young people aged 15-24 years old engaged with the Transition to Work service with the end goal of securing sustainable employment or higher education. The role is classified at Bipers Class 51, Grade 7. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis so apply now to ensure you don't miss out. Find out more and apply.
Youth Alcohol and Other Drugs Case Manager - YFS
Youth and Family Service (YFS) Logan is seeking a full time, fixed term (until June 2020 with a view to permanency) Youth Alcohol and Other Drugs Case Manager for the Slacks Creek location classified at SCHADS Award Level 4. The role will work with young people aged 12-25, providing intensive case management support to address goals around reducing substance use and additional vulnerabilities such as mental health, housing and legal issues. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis so apply now to ensure you don't miss out. Find out more and apply.