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Family Matters No. 46 - April 1997

Working with Aboriginal families

Issues and guidelines for family and child counsellors
Stephen Ralph

Abstract

This article is based on the author's experience as a Family Court counsellor with Aboriginal families in Central Australia over a 12 month period. He seeks to share insights and knowledge gained from providing conciliation counselling to Aboriginal families at times of family breakdown and separation. Issues of cross cultural communication, family violence and service provision are discussed, and guidelines offered to facilitate and promote work in this area. Although the focus is on counselling services, the article offers a range of sensitivities of which family researchers need to be aware.

This article is based on the author's experience as a Family Court counsellor with Aboriginal families in Central Australia over a 12 month period. He seeks to share insights and knowledge gained from providing conciliation counselling to Aboriginal families at times of family breakdown and separation. Issues of cross cultural communication, family violence and service provision are discussed, and guidelines offered to facilitate and promote work in this area. Although the focus is on counselling services, the article offers a range of sensitivities of which family researchers need to be aware.

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