Prof. Cathy Humphreys
Cathy Humphreys is Professor of Social Work at University of Melbourne. For 5 years she held the Alfred Felton Chair of Child and Family Welfare, a professorship established in collaboration with the Alfred Felton Trust, the Department of Social Work at University of Melbourne and The Centre for Excellence for Child and Family Welfare in Victoria, the peak body for vulnerable children, youth and family organistations in Victoria. A partnership between The Centre, community sector organisations and University of Melbourne continues to support research collaboration and implementation.
A multi-million dollar program of research in the areas of domestic and family violence and out of home care has been sustained since 2006 and supported through 8 Australian Research Council grants and numerous other grants from government, philanthropy and community sector organisations. Developing the knowledge base to support practice and policy developments in the areas of domestic and family violence, as well as that of vulnerable children in out of home care drive the research program.
Cathy worked as a social work practitioner in the mental health, domestic violence, and children, youth and families sector for 16 years before becoming a social work academic. She worked at University of Warwick in the UK for 12 years prior to returning to Australia.
This two-year project will focus on the relationship between statutory child protection, family law, and community-based services, gathering and analysing evidence synthesised through a participatory action research process to strengthen the co-design of the service systems. An Advisory Group (government and non-government stakeholders) will play a critical role in this process. The intended outcomes are to foster the use of evidence to enhance greater cross-sector collaboration to support women and their children; and stronger accountability for perpetrators of domestic abuse. The over-arching research question is: What are the elements that facilitate differential pathways and appropriate service system support for the safety and well-being of women and children living with and separating from family violence in an integrated intervention system? The proposed research will involve (1) conducting a scoping review of evidence specific to collaborative work in the fields of child protection, family law and D/FV; (2) analysing current data from state child protection systems to understand the differential service pathways for a diverse group of women and children living with D/FV; and (3) applying the identified criteria for effective collaboration to case study sites in WA, NSW and Victoria.
Dr. Nicole Leggett
Dr Nicole Leggett is the Manager of the Family and Domestic Violence Unit in the Department for Child Protection and Family Support. The Family and Domestic Violence Unit is responsible for:
developing family and domestic violence policy and procedure for child protection workers; and
family and domestic violence strategic planning across government.
The focus of family and domestic violence strategic planning is increasing victim safety and perpetrator accountability through integrated responses across government and non-government agencies. Dr Leggett has been working for the Family and Domestic Violence Unit for seven years and before that worked at the Women’s Council for Domestic and Family Violence Services.
Child protection agencies have historically focused their responses to family and domestic violence on increasing the safety and protectiveness of mothers. This approach has led to responses that place responsibility on mothers for stopping the perpetrators use of violence which in many cases has led to an increase in the danger posed to the woman and her child/ren and created a revolving door for child protection agencies as the perpetrator continues to use violence.
This presentation will provide an overview of reforms being implemented across the Department for Child Protection and Family Support to prioritise perpetrator responsibility and accountability in responses to family and domestic violence. Case studies will be used to provide examples of practice changes and discussion will be facilitated about the best ways that child protection and family violence services can work together to promote the safety and wellbeing of women and children.
Ms. Amanda Paton & Ms. Natalie Hall
Amanda is a Clinical Psychologist, and Director at Parkerville Children and Youth Care. Amanda has worked at Parkerville since 2005 and began in a direct care role, before taking on case management, program management and senior psychology roles. Amanda has a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Psychology both from Curtin University and a Masters in Applied Psychology Clinical, from Murdoch University. She has significant experience in the assessment and treatment of children and young people with complex abuse and trauma histories and providing complex Comprehensive Assessments for children and young people living in foster care. Her area of speciality is working with and supporting children and young people who have experienced sexual abuse. Amanda also provides training to internal and external staff on numerous issues related to the care of children who have experienced trauma through abuse.
Natalie worked for the Department for Child Protection from 1987 to 2009 in a variety of practitioner and leadership roles, she has a Bachelor of Social Work (Curtin University 1985) and a Graduate Diploma of Criminal Justice (University of Western Australia 2009). In 2006 Natalie was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to research multi-agency services for children who have been harmed and in 2010 commenced working for Parkerville Children and Youth Care as the Director of the George Jones Child Advocacy Centre in Armadale. Natalie is currently the Director of Research, Quality & Development and a fellow of Leadership Western Australia.
This presentation aims to provide attendees with an overview of child sexual abuse in Australia, explore the Child Advocacy Centre model and how this model can be used to enable better therapeutic outcomes for children and young people. One in four girls and one in six boys will experience sexual abuse before they are 1 years of age. Across Australia, more children are coming into the out of home care system each year due to a myriad of abuse and neglect related issues. A capacity for a child and family to overcome their experience of child sexual abuse is shaped by a number of factors; arguably one of the most important factors as service providers and policy makers, is the impact that we have on their experience. The Child Advocacy Centre model is used in over 900 centres around the world, and is being embraced in different forms across Australia, including the George Jones Child Advocacy Centre in Armadale. The model requires a centre based approach where the child and family attend the one family friendly space to access all services from forensic interviewing, medical examination and therapeutic services. It further promotes the provision of a safe, welcoming and respectful environment where the children and their families can find consistency and comfort following their traumatic experience; they are lead through this journey by a Family Advocate who under the model supports the family from intake, interview, examination, and therapy and ongoing until the family no longer requires a co-ordinated response. The Advocate role looks to strengthen the family’s resilience in the knowledge that child abuse is often not the only stressor the family has experienced. We will explore this model and how it can improve experiences for children and their family and in turn improve their therapeutic outcomes.
2015 Training Resources
See this year's training resources below!