Chris is a social worker who has been working for the past 15 years with individuals, couples and families facing a broad range of concerns in their lives and relationships. Chris currently works with Emerging Minds and the National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health, and is also a narrative therapist with Country Health SA providing consultations via video link to people living in rural and remote South Australia. Previously, Chris has worked as a counsellor, supervisor and manager in a family and relationships counselling service with Uniting Communities, with a particular focus around responding to family violence and the effects of childhood sexual abuse. He holds a Master of Narrative Therapy and Community Work and is a member of the Dulwich Centre Teaching Faculty.
Enabling children to have a genuine voice in decisions affecting their lives is a challenge faced by practitioners across a broad range of sectors. Yet it is a practice that significantly contributes to child safety and to useful early intervention and prevention approaches to support the mental health and wellbeing of children.
For practitioners, issues in adopting this practice can include: confidence in engaging children in developmentally appropriate ways; agency structural and workflow issues that inadvertently limit flexibility and creativity; the expectations of parents and carers on the type of intervention required; and finding ways of working collaboratively that minimise power imbalances between adults and children.
In this webinar, Chris, Lisa and Dom drew on their years of experience in working with children and families to discuss the practices that they have found useful in creating genuine partnerships to support the mental health and wellbeing of children and their families.
This webinar was for practitioners who work with children, as well as practitioners who work with adults and who want to enhance their skills around engaging children. Learning outcomes included:
- An understanding of the key intentions and purposes of building genuine partnerships with children and families in service provision and the ethics that inform these endeavours;
- An exploration of some ideas and practices to support practitioners to build genuine partnerships with children;
- An introduction to some of useful tools and processes that can be readily implemented by organisations to support practice.
This webinar was the second in a series focusing on children's mental health. It was co-produced by CFCA and Emerging Minds. They are working together as part of the National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health, which is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health under the National Support for Child and Youth Mental Health Program.
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