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Family Matters No. 59 - June 2001

A framework for responding to vulnerable children and their families

Sarah Wise

Abstract

In the United Kingdom, there has been an explicit move towards greater emphasis on providing family support when there is concern about a child's welfare. Experience suggests that effective assessment is the foundation upon which to configure the effective delivery of services to children and families. Continuing previous research (1999) at the Australian Institute of Family Studies on the outcomes of the UK 'Looking After Children' approach in out of home care in Victoria, the author discusses the value of the UK Children in Need assessment framework for Victorian Family Services. This approach aims to provide effective and comprehensive services to vulnerable families as early as possible within a child focused service model.

In the United Kingdom, there has been an explicit move towards greater emphasis on providing family support when there is concern about a child's welfare. Experience suggests that effective assessment is the foundation upon which to configure the effective delivery of services to children and families. Continuing previous research (1999) at the Australian Institute of Family Studies on the outcomes of the UK 'Looking After Children' approach in out of home care in Victoria, the author discusses the value of the UK Children in Need assessment framework for Victorian Family Services. This approach aims to provide effective and comprehensive services to vulnerable families as early as possible within a child focused service model.

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