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- Friday, 22nd January 2021 -

What was YOUR response?

Have you read the many thoughtful and discerning comments posted in response to Adopting new law can be dangerous for kids, the opinion piece written by PeakCare’s Lindsay Wegener published in the Courier Mail on 20th January?

In addition to these comments, our email and Linked-In accounts are being inundated:

  • Well said… pleased to see you are still leading the way…
  • As always, insightful and reflective…
  • Great article and spot on…
  • Great work bringing attention to this issue…
  • Great article … didn’t know about the Mary Ellen Wilson history, so that was really informative!
  • Thank you so much for the advocacy you do.  It is reassuring that there are times when it feels like someone (you!) is saying something out loud
Not all comments received have been so complimentary:
  • And yes things could go wrong in an adoption, but the chances of that happening are far less than in any other alternative…

PeakCare respects that there is a diversity of views held about the extent of the role that can be played by adoption and the safeguards needed to prevent its mis-use. A diversity of opinion simply means more research, discussion and debate is needed.

All subscribers to our eNews have the opportunity to contribute to the richness and depth of these debates and to influence the decisions of policy-makers. Irrespective of whether you agree or disagree with the matters raised in Lindsay’s opinion piece, add your comments, anonymously if you prefer, to those already posted here. Make your voices heard. Future generations of Queensland children are counting on you to help make sure that the best possible policy decisions are being made. 

31 countries call on Australia to change its laws – Embarrassing!

31 countries, including Canada, France, Germany and Spain have called on Australia to change its laws and raise the age of criminal responsibility. This followed representation made by a coalition of groups to the United Nations on 20 January 2021 highlighting that Australian States and Territories have youth justice laws permitting the incarceration of children as young as 10 in youth detention centres. It is embarrassing that 31 countries have felt compelled to petition Australia to stop this practice. Support the Raise the Age Campaign.

QCOSS Raise the Age strategy meeting open for registrations

QCOSS is calling on stakeholders to join a strategy meeting for the Raise the Age campaign to raise the age of criminal responsibility in Queensland to 14 years old. The meeting will be held on Friday, 5th February at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers in Brisbane. For those unable to attend in person, the session will also be hosted online via Zoom. Find out more and register.

Hope and Healing for foster care update 

PeakCare recently completed the report outlining the information from the Logan Workshop held in December 2020. This report has been distributed to relevant parties however if you have been not been sent the report and believe you should have received it, please contact Rebecca Foley via email to to obtain a copy. Arrangements are currently underway to hold further workshops in Rockhampton and Townsville as we are really keen to see if the same themes and trends are present for our North Queensland carers and support workers.

Survey for professionals, carers and young people in out of home care

The Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare is conducting a survey that aims to identify the key needs and service gaps in the out-of-home care sector. Findings from the survey will be used to assist in obtaining direct grant funding that drives sector innovation and reform. The survey will close 29th January. Find out more.

REMINDER: Nomination of candidates to stand for election to the PeakCare Board due soon

Member organisations are reminded that nominations of candidates to stand for election to five positions on the PeakCare Board are due by COB Friday, 12th February. Have YOU got what it takes to perform the important role of a Board member in ensuring the sound governance of PeakCare? If this is a role that isn’t right for you, but you know of others who might fit the bill, please forward this information on and encourage them to accept a nomination to stand for election. For more information about who is eligible to stand for election and the process for lodging nominations, click here

REMINDER: Vote for your preferred PeakCare Award candidates

Hundreds of votes have now been cast for the PeakCare Award candidates – the SIC, the WOKE, the DEADLY and the LEGEND. The only way of making sure that your preferred candidates receive an award is to vote for them and to encourage your colleagues and friends to do the same. Given that all candidates are extremely worthy, you will need to give careful and close consideration to the statements in support of their nominations. Copies of these statements and instructions about how to vote can be obtained by clicking here or visit our website and click on the scrolling red words that appear on the home page. Voting closes COB Friday, 5th February 2021.

New toolkit for supporting refugees and migrants in Australia

The Settlement Council of Australia (SCoA) has developed a governance toolkit for settlement services and community organisations providing services to support refugees and migrants in Australia. The "Best of Both Worlds" toolkit is particularly aimed at smaller organisations, that might need some guidance to understand and apply the various laws, rules and regulations that govern organisations in Australia. The toolkit examines what good governance looks like, including the importance of a management committee, and practical considerations such as recording meeting minutes and managing finances. Access the toolkit.

Charity reform on the national agenda

Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Senator Zed Seselja have announced, in agreement with all State and Territory Treasurers, the development of a cross-border recognition model to streamline financial reporting and provide a single registration point for charities across Australia. This will reduce the costs and administrative burden for ACNC registered charities that conduct fundraising across state borders. Currently, groups or organisations must apply for a fundraising licence in every state or territory in which they hope to raise funds. The reforms will be in place by 2022. Find out more.

OFT extends deadline for holding 2020 AGMs

The Queensland Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has extended the period in which incorporated associations must hold their AGMs to 30th April 2021. The extension will be available to any incorporated association due to hold its AGM between 23rd March 2020 and 29th April 2021. The OFT encourages all associations to hold their meetings as soon as possible while adhering to social distancing requirements. The OFT has confirmed that relevant organisations could conduct their meetings on video conferencing platforms without updating their rules. The OFT website will be updated to confirm this extension for incorporated associations. 

Nomination deadline extended for 7News Young Achiever Awards

Nominations for the 7News Young Achiever Awards will be open until Sunday, 31st January. Category winners will each receive $2,000 in prizes and a trophy, and every nominee will receive a dedicated media release sent to their local paper encouraging them to write a story and will receive a certificate of achievement. The Awards aim to acknowledge, encourage and most importantly promote the positive achievements of all young people throughout Queensland up to and including 29 years of age. The Awards span 8 categories including Women Empowering Others, Creating Change, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Achievement, Volunteer, and more. Find out more and nominate.

Finalists announced for HESTA Impact Awards

The eleven finalists for the inaugural HESTA Impact Awards have been announced. Finalist achievements covered sustainability, gender equity, health and diversity and inclusion initiatives, including a hospital-wide recycling program, health literacy sessions for culturally and linguistically diverse communities and a free online career support program for women in need. The finalists were announced across three categories of Team Innovation, Outstanding Organisation, and Individual Distinction. Each category winner will receive funding support to continue their good work. Find out more.

Re-engaging volunteers and Covid-19 - Volunteering Australia survey 

Volunteering Australia is seeking to record via conducting a survey, how the volunteering sector has been affected by, has adapted and is now managing as COVID-19 restrictions change. The data collected will be used to inform advocacy, respond to national inquiries and share across the sector to help inform practice. Learn more and take part

Community Child Care Fund Grant Round 3 open

The Federal government's Community Child Care Fund Grant Round 3 is now open, and will close 22 February. The applicant must be a Child Care Subsidy approved provider of an approved child care service, and be located in, or servicing families from a CCCF Priority Area; OR service a regional, remote or very remote area; OR provide specialised childcare services to a vulnerable or disadvantaged sector of its community; OR have been previously funded under CCCF Round 1 or 2. Find out more and apply.

THUMBS UP to politicians, of all persuasions, who have the courage to honestly wrestle with, and make difficult decisions about, complex child protection issues. Our job is to make sure that you are well-informed when called upon to consider and make these decisions. Your job is to make sure you listen and properly consider the advice you receive. Only then can we be sure that the best possible decisions are being made. 

Solution Focused Leadership
Brisbane - Monday, 15th to Tuesday, 16th February 2021

Presented by Compass Seminars

The Solution Focused Leadership approach focuses on solutions rather than concentrating on how to solve the problem, meaning your organisation's time and focus is spent on developing action steps towards solutions or your clients' improved outcomes. This workshop is about outcomes - how we construct them, how we achieve them and how we can lead others to make better ones. Find out more and register.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Course
Brisbane - Saturday, 20th and Saturday, 27th February 2021
Presented by Lighthouse Resources

This course over 2 consecutive Saturdays teaches adults how to assist adolescents who are developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. Course participants learn about adolescent development, the signs and symptoms of the common and disabling mental health problems in young people, where and how to get help when a young person is developing a mental illness, what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation. Find out more and register.

Working Through the Pain of Loss: 
Brisbane - Friday, 26th February 2021
Presented by Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW)

This full day workshop provides an overview of grief and loss theory and an evidence-based practice application to acute presentations of bereavement and loss in adults and children. It will use case examples and practice reflection to consolidate active learning of the content presented. This workshop provides an overview of seminal and contemporary grief theory as well as practice approaches to grief work based on the best available evidence as well as expert opinion. Find out more and register.

Child Safe Organisations
Online - Friday, 29th January 2021

This free workshop by NAPCAN helps organisations embed a child-safe culture into their people and workplace. All children have the right to be safe and to feel safe all of the time. A child safe organisation values children and is committed to treating their needs and their safety as the top priority. It means taking serious proactive steps to prevent physical, sexual or emotional abuse, neglect or any kind of harm. Child Safe Organisations move beyond safety and demonstrates a commitment to children's/young people's wellbeing. They are committed to creating environments where children/young people experience genuine engagement and agency, can thrive, reach their full potential, and talk about their worries safely and openly. Find out more and register.

NDS Roundtable 1
Online - Tuesday, 2nd February

The NDIA’s 'Access and eligibility policy' consultation paper outlines how the Agency envisages using independent assessment to assist with access and eligibility decisions. It addresses matters such as informing people about the NDIS and how to access it, the use of independent assessments including exemptions, and quality assurance. NDS is hosting online roundtable discussions to capture disability provider views on each of the three consultation papers released by the NDIA to date. Feedback captured will inform NDS’s submission to the NDIA. Find out more and register.

Understanding coercive control
Online - Wednesday, 3rd February

The Family Law Pathways Networks across Australia invite you to join a free webinar by award winning investigative journalist and author, Jess Hill. Her work dives deep into the abuse so many women and children experience – abuse that is often reinforced by the justice system they trust to protect them. Critically, it shows that we can drastically reduce domestic violence – not in generations to come, but today. Find out more and register.

Families and homelessness
Online - Wednesday, 10th February

It is important that practitioners working with families experiencing homelessness understand the impact this experience can have on parenting and provide appropriate support. By supporting parents to have a positive relationship with their child, practitioners can also help to support the social and emotional wellbeing of children. This free webinar by Child Family Community Australia will explore evidence-based ways families can support children's wellbeing in experiences of homelessness, and how practitioners can integrate this knowledge in their work with families. Find out more and register.

Human rights in mental health
Online - Wednesday, 24th February 2021

This free interactive training presented by NDS and Queensland Human Rights Commission is targeted at those working in the disability service sector, particularly front line and service manager roles. This training will build capacity for staff to meet their obligations under the Queensland Human Rights Act 2019. The Act gives protection for 23 separate human rights and obligates public entities to act compatibly with human rights and to give proper consideration to human rights when acting and making a decision. Find out more and register.


ANROWS National Research Conference on Violence Against Women and their Children
Online - Monday, 1st to Friday, 5th March 2021

This online symposium will explore how policymakers, practice designers and practitioners are using evidence to understand, respond to and prevent violence against women and their children. Early bird registrations open today and include a discount of up to 33% on the price of registration. The symposium will offer sessions spread over five days and use specialised conference technology to encourage mutual learning and connections, provide flexible attendance options and ensure you have a chance to truly contribute and share ideas. Find out more and register.

SNAICC National Conference 2021
Gold Coast - Monday, 30th August to Thursday, 2nd September 2021

The 9th SNAICC National Conference, Our Children Matter: Innovative Approaches to New World Challenges will be held in the lands of the Yugambeh People. Key themes will focus on the impacts of COVID-19 on communities, child safety and wellbeing, early years and the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people. This conference is the largest of its type in the Southern Hemisphere and provides the opportunity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations, policy makers, researchers, practitioners, government representatives, other non-government organisations and industry representatives to gather to share their work, learn from one another and make renewed commitments to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Abstract submissions are now open until 19th February 2021 across five themes and numerous presentation types.

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PeakCare Queensland
PO Box 159
Paddington Qld 4064

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