Extra help for high risk families on the Gold Coast

Published Thursday, 21 June, 2018 at 11:18 AM

Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Di Farmer

The Palaszczuk Government will invest more than $2.3 million over three years to trial a new model of intensive family support on the Gold Coast.

The program, called SafeCare, would target vulnerable families with children aged up to five years who are at risk of entering the child protection system.

Minister for Child Safety Di Farmer said Act for Kids would make weekly 50-90 minute visits for about 18 weeks into the homes of Gold Coast families in need of support.

“I have no doubt that parenting skills will be improved during that time” she said.

“The focus will be on parent support and behaviour and the training is structured to suit the needs of each individual family.

“This is just another way the Palaszczuk Queensland Government is working hard to keep children and young people safe.”

Member for Gaven Meaghan Scanlon said the program would help vulnerable Gold Coast families to improve parenting skills and was particularly successful with young parents who had no social support.

“This program teaches parents to understand the importance of a safe home, the types of hazards in homes, ways to remove household hazards and the importance of supervision,” Ms Scanlon said.

Ms Farmer said parents will be taught to keep children as healthy as possible, how to react when a child is sick or injured and to recognise when symptoms needed emergency care, a doctor’s appointment or if the child can be cared for at home.

Act for Kids on the Gold Coast will deliver the highly regarded SafeCare model which has achieved excellent results in the US and is being rolled out in Victoria and New South Wales.

Act for Kids regional director Gary Poole welcomed the funding and said the organisation continues to work closely with the Queensland government to deliver new child and family programs.

“SafeCare Family Educators will work one-on-one with parents in their home environment on the Gold Coast, to develop the practical skills and knowledge to make sure they can provide the best care possible for their children,” Mr Poole said.

“SafeCare is there to help families care for and protect their children at home.

“It’s important that parents feel they can ask for help. Sometimes they don’t know where to go for support or are afraid or ashamed to ask for help.

“SafeCare will help families avoid a path of stress, reaction and potential child abuse and neglect.”


Media Contact:                      Ron Goodman             0427 781 920