FRSA eBulletin - Thursday 6 April 2017
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Special thanks to those members in our network who came to Canberra last week to participate in the FRSA Strategic Leaders Forum. Looking over the feedback from the working groups over the two days there was certainly robust discussion and plenty of action and takeaway messages for FRSA to develop further. Day 1 was focused predominantly on issues around the Commissioning for Outcomes conversation that is ripe in our sector. We had a number of strong presentations to set the tone of the day and an afternoon of facilitated discussion by Ms Cheryl Kernot from the Centre for Social Impact. That conversation traversed the role of collaboration/competition in our sector with key themes emerging around where and how collaboration works; alternatives to collaboration; the place for competition in our sector; what are the best ways to foster innovation, inclusion of smaller and remote organisation. The social value question was also opened up on Day 1 and this will continue to be in scope of our work moving forward. 
Day 2 started with the Parliamentary Breakfast with FRSA Board Chair launching the FRSA Research Report,
Strengthening prevention and early intervention services for families into the futureIt was great to have a number of supportive and interested Parliamentarians join the network for breakfast that day with special thanks extended to Ms Nicolle Flint who represented Senator Zed Seselja,  Assistant Minister for Family Services; Senator Louise Pratt, Shadow Minister for Families and Communities; and, Greens' Senator Rachel Siewert taking time out from the very busy and active morning schedule to speak to us.

The Report itself is the start of a conversation. It is also the culmination of efforts here at FRSA to uphold our commitment to our Members to deliver a research project with a prevention and early intervention focus. We are extremely grateful to our members for their financial support for the project which began in June 2014. I also acknowledge the commitment and dedication to the project made by key author, Professor John Toumbourou from Deakin University as well as members of the FRSA Board especially through the FRSA Research Advisory Committee, which had primary carriage of the activity, Dr Deb Hartman, Ms Karen Field and former Board Director Dr Ricki Jeffery. I also acknowledge the work of FRSA’s Senior Project Officer, Dr Adam Heaton for his role in seeing this project through.
The Report seeks to highlight the skills and capacity in the family and relationship sector to be more actively engaged in prevention and early intervention services. If we can harness and build on this capacity, there exists a great potential to impact across a broader range of social and health issues causing great harm to Australian families and those people in them. As providers of family and relationship services we are uniquely positioned in that we have access and insight into the family at various points across the lifecourse. Delegates were joined by facilitator, Dee Brooks for the remainder of the day to begin unpacking the report, review the range of Recommendations and begin to set objectives moving forward. These will assist in setting the agenda for further discussion throughout our network when the FRSA Regional Forums will be held in July/August this year.
Members of FRSA can access the Presentation slides and any transcripts via the
Members portal of the FRSA Website.
In other news …
FRSA launches new research report
- Communities for Children 50% requirement
- Parliamentary Inquiry with a Family Violence focus
- New ICPS Report: Help-seeking needs and gaps for preventing child sexual abuse
- AIWH releases Child protection Australia 2015-16
- New ethical code and practice guidelines for community service workers
- AICD releases non for profit blueprint
- OECD releases economic survey of Australia 2017
- Papers from the 17th National Family Law Conference now available
- Get involved
- Resources 
- Events and Training Calendar

Kind regards,
Jackie Brady
FRSA Executive Director


It was with great pleasure that on Day 2 of the Strategic Leadership Forum (SLF) last week at the Australian Parliament House we launched the FRSA Research Report Strengthening prevention and early intervention services for families into the future.
The development of this report has been a highly iterative process due to its significant importance to our sector. In 2014 FRSA invited support from our membership through a Strategic Projects Fund to initiate and develop a new body of work, which members identified should have a focus on prevention and early intervention. The successful tender applicant was internationally renowned Public Health and Prevention Science expert
Professor John Toumbourou at Deakin University. As the lead author, Professor Toumbourou applied a public health lens in proposing the contents of this report and its recommendations for sector-wide and inter-sector discussion.

This Report is invaluable in guiding our way toward taking a greater public health approach to meeting the needs of our clients. There is a great and relatively untapped opportunity for us to have a far more integral role in identifying risk factors in the lives of the children, families and communities with whom we work, enabling us to contribute to a more holistic service delivery response.
FRSA is looking forward to discuss the contents and recommendations in the Report with you further as we as engage with a range of stakeholders.

We encourage you to read the
Report and do not hesitate to contact us to discuss it on (02) 6121 1811 or at

The report is free to download via the
FRSA Website.
Click here to download the Report

Communities for Children 50% requirement

Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) have received a number of programs for assessment recently for the 50% requirement, and feedback will take at least 5-6 weeks in most instances.

In helping CFCA plan ahead, if you intend to submit programs for the 50% requirement in the coming weeks, please email and let know:

  • how many programs you will be submitting; and
  • an estimate of when to expect the submissions.

If you’re preparing an evaluation plan for an emerging program submission, be sure to outline the key evaluation milestones. Your plan should have information about the data collection method, outcomes measures, sample size, data analysis and a timeline for when these tasks will be completed.

To learn more about the
Expert Panel Project, please click here.

Parliamentary Inquiry with a Family Violence focus
In the recent Parliamentary Sitting period, FRSA received advice about a new Parliamentary Inquiry looking at family violence in family law services. The ‘Parliamentary Inquiry into a better family law system to support and protect those affect by family violence’ will be Chaired by Ms Sarah Henderson, MP

Terms of Reference for the Inquiry certainly call on individuals to make known their personal experiences of the system. We will be working on a submission and are currently in the process of assembling a small group of members who expressed an interest in being involved in ad hoc family law work via the FRSA Member Survey. 

FRSA Members, please keep an eye on the FRSA Member Alert for more information.
New ICPS Report: Help-seeking needs and gaps for preventing child sexual abuse
A new report from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse examines the needs of exisiting service provision for the professionals, parents and community members relationing to the prevention and reporting of child sexual abuse. 

The report found that there was no coordination of prevention programs and there are limited programs and services available to help prevent child and sexual abuse. 

The full report is available to
download here
AIHW releases Child Protection Australia 2015-16
A new Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report, Child protection Australia 2015-16, shows that the number of children in out-of-home care system in Australia has increased.

Highlighting that most children in out-of-home care were placed with relatives or kin (49%) or in foster care (39%) and, for the first time, presents data on the relationships between children placed with relatives or kin and their carer.

At the meeting with State and Territory Community Services Ministers in November, Ministers agreed “the Commonwealth, State and Territory governments would work collaboratively to
develop a set of guiding principles to drive improvement in this area.

To read the full report, please click here

New ethical code and practice guidelines for community services workers
Working to a set of clear standards under an ethical code is essential in the community sector, no matter the service field. After extensive consultation, the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA) has launched a revised Code of Ethics and its new Practice Guidelines that determine the standard expected of professionals in the sector.
The guidelines include indicators and are matched with a self-assessment tool designed for practitioners to identify their skill gaps and training needs. It is as important, however, that service providers review the Code and Guidelines to ensure their own policies are consistent with the professional framework.
You can download the resources via

AICD releases non for profit blueprint

The Australian Institute of Company Directors has released a comprehensive blueprint for the nation’s future, including specific recommendations to help ensure the health and success of Australia’s vital not-for-profit sector.

The Governance of a Nation: A Blueprint for Growth 2017 report aims to help improve economic and social outcomes for all Australians. Specific to the NFP sector, the report recommends improving the funding environment and developing a ‘fit for purpose’ regulatory regime with national consistency and less red tape.

To read the report, please visit the
AICD website here

OECD releases economic survey of Australia 2017

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) came out with its latest report on the Economic Survey of Australia for 2017. 

To view the Report,
please click here.
Papers from the 17th National Family Law Conference held in Melbourne from 18-21 October 2016 are now available in the members’ library on the Family Law Section website

Department of Health invites submissions - Social and Cultural Determinants of Indigenous Health

The Department of Health is inviting submissions from organisations and individuals on the social and cultural determinants of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health.

Determinants include (but are not limited to) connection to family, community, country, language and culture; racism; and early childhood development, education and youth.

The main questions asked through the online submission process are:
- What is your story? Share experiences, ideas and evidence on each of the determinants. 
- What are your key recommendation(s)? 
- References: If there is a published paper, a website, atrial or an evaluation that shows the impacts of your recommendation(s), please enter this information.

Share your ideas here, Submissions close 30 April 2017.  

ANU Survey of Family Law System Professionals reminder

Associate Professor Bruce Smyth from the Australian National University is investigating how families stuck in high-conflict make shared-time arrangements after separation ‘work’ (or not ‘work’) for their children – emotionally, practically and financially.
He’s seeking the views of family law system professionals (e.g., FDRPs, mediators, lawyers, judicial officers, etc.) about: (a) their attitudes to shared-time arrangements in different circumstances; (b) whether they use particular strategies when working with high-conflict clients or cases; and (c) what impact – if any – working with high-conflict cases has on their personal wellbeing. Bruce is hoping you might be willing to help by participating in this important study.
Participation is voluntary. The survey is anonymous, and takes about 15-20 minutes to complete. All information will be treated in strict confidence as far as allowed by law. 
It would be appreciated if this Invitation-to-Participate message could be circulated to frontline and other relevant staff in your organisation.
To take the survey, please click
More detailed information is available in the
Participant Information Sheet.
If you would like to discuss any aspect of the study, please contact Bruce on (+61) 1800 702 927 (toll free, business hours AEDT) or email:
The ethical aspects of this research have been approved by the Australian National University Human Research Ethics Committee (Protocol 2013/574).
Many thanks on Bruce’s behalf for considering this request.

The Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) is currently recruiting participants in its Children and Young People in Separated Families Research Project

They are seeking children and young people aged 10-17 and their families to talk to about their experiences when their parents have separated, and what services might be helpful for young people. They are seeking families who have recently finalised or are soon to finalise all parenting and/or property/financial arrangements. 

Participants can expect in-depth semi structured individual interviews with children and young people and a short separate interview with one parent of the child or young person. All interviews and discussions of sensitive and personal nature will be used only for research purposes only.

If your service has a client family that you think might fit this criteria, please let them know about the project. AIFS offer a variety of contact methods and want to hear from those who have experienced this.
•    Go to 
•    Call 1800 720 142 (freecall except for mobiles)
•    SMS 0448 383 007 (incl. your name & phone/email), or
•    Email (incl. your name & phone/email)
For more information about the study, visit:

Please share with your networks and if you have any questions, please view the FAQ sheet here.
Thank you for your help with this important research.

Children's Resilience Research Project seeking input

Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY) and Parenting Research Centre are holding free professional workshops Australia-wide to seek input from the sector Children's Resilience Research Project.

The workshops will run for 2.5 hours and will explore the concept of 'resilience in children' and what it means in practice. 

To find out more information about the Research Project and the workshop locations and times, please click here to
visit the website. Alternatively, please contact Child Resilience team at ARACY on 02 6248 2400 or
Engaging men’s responses to family violence

Cost: $30.00 (includes postage in Australia and GST) 

Effective early intervention is critical in stopping low and moderate-risk cases of family violence escalating into high-risk situations. This book focuses on how community, health and welfare counsellors and other workers, and practicing psychologists, can better engage with men to increase their motivation to access further support to address family violence issues.

Click to read more

A new edition of Women and separation – managing new horizons, is now available. This booklet is designed to support women going through separation or divorce.

Women and separation was developed by RAV counselling and family dispute resolution (mediation) staff, in partnership with beyondblue.

Click to read more.

FRSA Members interested in sharing their resources to the network,
get in touch here.
Evaluating the outcomes of programs for Indigenous families and communities is a new practitioner resource from Child Family Community Australia (CFCA), Australian Institute of Family Studies outlines some key considerations for community sector organisations and service providers who are thinking about evaluating the outcomes or impact of a program for Indigenous families or communities.

To view the PDF,
please click here.

FRSA Events & Training Calendar provides holiday dates, information on national days, events and appreciation weeks and locations of upcoming sector events and trainings.

Upcoming Events & Training for the next fortnight

Services for Seniors – An overview of all available services (Cofacilitated with COTA) – PRONIA
10.30am - 12.30pm, Wednesday 12 April 2017 
Clayton Community Centre Youth & family Services 9-15 Cooke Street Clayton Vic 
PRONIA (former Australian Greek Welfare Society) presents the following sessions for seniors at the Clayton Community Centre Youth & Family Services. Limited spots available. Booking essential by contacting PRONIA on 93889998 and RSVP. For further information on the sessions, please talk to Adonis Maglis Community Education Officer.

Solution Focused Brief Therapy with Michael Durrant
9.00am - 4.00pm, Monday 1 May - Tuesday 2 May 2017
Batman's Hill on Collins, 623 Collins Street, Melbourne Vic
Cost: $495
Do you support complex clients with limited time? Do your clients focus on the problem rather than how to change?  Would you like to learn an efficient, evidenced based approach to help clients move forward and reach their treatment outcomes? Book a seat today to add this valuable counseling approach to your toolbox.

THERAPLAY® Level One with Theraplay Institute
9.00am - 4.30pm, Tuesday 2 May - Friday 5 May 2017
Springlife Conferencing, 178 Springwood Road, Springwood QLD
Cost: $1850.00
Theraplay® is an evidenced-based, attachment-focused intervention utilising non-symbolic, interactional play to re-create experiences of secure attachment formation between parent and child. Therapist-guided short-term, dyadic therapy focuses on improving the child’s behavioural and emotional challenges through the parent-child relationship. 

If you would like to add your event or training to the FRSA Events & Training board,
please get in touch.
Please click here to view the FRSA Events & Training Calendar.
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