National survey of FaRS-funded service providers

Overview of services and service provider perspectives
Research Report – August 2018

Appendix A: Descriptive results of the online survey - All tables

Table A1: Characteristics of survey respondents
  Female Male Total
  n % n % n %
Total 169 80 40 19 212 100
Respondent role
Practitioner 89 53 22 55 114 54
Manager 47 28 14 35 61 29
Both 33 20 4 10 37 17
Working hours
Full-time 100 59 29 73 131 62
Part-time 69 41 11 28 81 38
Service type
FaRS 119 70 25 63 146 69
SVFS 4 2 2 5 6 3
Both 46 27 13 33 60 28
Table A2: Main service locations by service type
  FaRS SFVS Total
  n % n % n %
Total 146 69 66 31 212 100
Geographic remoteness
Major cities of Australia 74 51 38 58 112 53
Inner regional Australia 31 21 15 23 46 22
Outer regional Australia 22 15 10 15 32 15
Remote/very remote Australia 19 13 3 5 24 11
Services at multiple locations
Respondents' employer provides services at another location 67 46 35 53 102 48
Table A3: Secondary service locations by service type
  FaRS SFVS Total
  n % n % n %
Total 146 69 66 31 212 100
Major cities of Australia 30 45 16 48 46 46
Inner regional Australia 14 21 6 18 20 20
Outer regional Australia 13 20 8 24 21 21
Remote/very remote Australia 9 14 3 9 12 12
Table A4: Types of services offered, by geographic remoteness
  Metro ( n = 103) Inner regional (n = 43) Outer regional/remote (n = 51)
  n % n % n %
Service types offered
Centre-based individual programs 80 78 41 95 37 73
Information/advice/referral 78 76 35 81 45 88
Centre-based group programs 77 75 36 84 33 65
Centre-based couple programs 70 68 36 84 33 65
Centre-based parent programs 61 59 36 84 34 67
Centre-based child/youth-focused programs 52 50 28 65 31 61
Telephone services 56 54 22 51 23 45
Centre-based family programs 51 50 23 53 26 51
Outreach services 38 37 27 63 25 49
Case management 43 42 11 26 28 55
Community events/services 28 27 14 33 26 51
Online services 16 16 4 9 9 18
In-home support 8 8 5 12 11 22
Table A5: Proportion of practitioner time spent on activities
  Total (%) SFVS (%) FaRS (%)
Counselling 58 56 59
Education/skills training 38 27 41
Advocacy/support 31 26 32
Working with children 29 20 32
Working with young people 28 22 30
Case management 27 24 28
Family therapy 26 18 28
Mediation 15 7 17
Other 18 9 21

Note: Respondents were practitioner or practitioner-manager respondents only

Table A6: Proportion of service time spent on activities by service type and by role
  Total (%) Managers (%) Practitioners (%) SFVS (%) FaRS (%)
Intake and assessment 72 72 72 66 74
Supervision and professional development 37 34 38 28 41
Trialling innovative approaches to service provision 32 31 34 22 36
Service delivery (with individuals, couples, families) 32 33 32 26 34
Prevention 31 29 32 24 34
Crisis intervention 26 28 26 21 29
Early intervention 22 20 24 20 23
Client follow-up and assessment of outcomes 20 22 19 16 22

Note: Proportions add up to more than 100% - practitioners commonly apportioned more than 100% on this measure so it is best used as an indicator of activities on which they spent the most time rather than an estimate of actual proportions.

Table A7: Service delivery - ICT tools and devices, by location
  Metro ( n = 103) Inner regional ( n = 43) Outer regional/remote ( n = 51)
  n % n % n %
Our service uses the following for counselling, education, consultation, support groups and outreach…
Telephone services 72 70 26 60 35 69
Text messaging 71 69 27 63 31 61
Websites 60 58 23 53 21 41
Skype, video conferencing 41 40 12 28 23 45
Online services 17 17 8 19 17 33
Social networking sites 21 20 5 12 15 29
Smart phone apps 18 17 11 26 7 14
We don't use any of these at our service 8 8 6 14 10 20
Table A8: Most commonly reported sources of referrals to FaRS and SFVS
  Total (%) SFVS (%) FaRS (%)
Self-referral 45 37 47
Family/friend/neighbour 28 23 29
Other professional at your service 25 24 26
Clergy 10 7 11
External family services 18 20 18
Child protection agencies 20 24 19
Financial 8 8 7
Legal (e.g. legal assistance, family law courts) 24 23 24
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 18 16 18
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 10 17 8
Education 12 8 13
Police 15 22 12
Specialist: alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist FDV, sexual assault 16 25 13
Table A9: Most commonly reported sources of referrals, by location
  Total (%) Metro (%) Inner regional (%) Outer region/
remote (%)
Self-referral 45 46 42 45
Family/friend/neighbour 28 27 24 31
Other professional at your service 25 25 27 25
Clergy 10 15 7 4
External family services 18 20 16 17
Child protection agencies 20 14 25 29
Financial 8 7 7 9
Legal 24 22 30 23
Health 18 15 18 22
Housing 10 8 15 11
Education 12 11 15 11
Police 15 16 9 17
Specialist 16 14 18 16
Table A10: Most frequent destination services for FaRS and SFVS referrals, by geographic remoteness
  Metro (%) Inner regional (%) Outer regional/remote (%)
Family and Relationship Services (FaRS) 36 42 39
Specialised Family Violence Services (SFVS) 29 24 15
Family Law Services 23 24 20
Communities for Children Facilitating Partner 10 6 10
Children and Parenting Support 26 30 20
Intensive Family Support Services 14 17 16
Other DSS funded services 18 15 20
Family Services 15 14 16
Child protection agencies 13 13 20
Financial 15 13 22
Legal (e.g. legal assistance, family law courts) 29 22 25
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 21 14 28
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 13 14 22
Education 15 10 21
Police 16 12 21
Specialist: alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist FDV, sexual assault 20 21 22
Other 12 7 8
Table A11: Other services in FaRS/SFVS catchment area, by geographic remoteness
  Total
(n = 212)
Metro
(n = 112)
Inner regional
(n = 42)
Outer regional/remote
(n = 55)
Service types    
Family services 93 93 96 93
Child protection agencies 86 83 89 89
Community services 84 79 91 87
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 84 80 87 91
Children's counselling services 83 84 89 76
Disability 83 78 91 85
Police 82 76 83 93
Education 79 72 85 89
Specialist: alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist FDV, sexual assault 79 73 85 87
Legal (e.g. legal assistance, family law courts) 78 73 80 85
Financial 77 71 83 85
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 77 68 87 89
Employment 76 68 83 89
Youth programs/services 74 66 76 89
Men's programs/services 68 65 76 69
Elder services 60 55 65 67
Table A12: DSS funded services most commonly co-located with respondents' service (by service type)
  FaRS
( n = 146)
SFVS
( n = 66)
Total
( n = 212)
  n % n % n %
Number of FaRS co-located with DSS services 122 84 53 80 175 83
Type of DSS co-located service
Family Law Services 62 42 34 52 96 45
Other Family and Relationship Services (FaRS) 61 42 30 45 91 43
Children and Parenting Support 40 27 25 38 65 31
Financial Counselling, Wellbeing and Capability 25 17 18 27 43 20
Other Specialised Family Violence Services (SFVS) 18 12 15 23 33 16
Emergency Relief 18 12 14 21 32 15
Intensive Family Support Services 22 15 8 12 30 14
Communities for Children Facilitating Partner 9 6 9 14 18 8
Community Mental Health 8 5 8 12 16 8
Personal Helpers and Mentors Service (PHaMS) 10 7 3 5 13 6
Table A13: Non-DSS funded services most commonly co-located with respondents' service (by service type)
  FaRS
( n = 146)
SFVS
( n = 66)
Total
( n = 212)
  n % n % n %
Number of FaRS co-located with non-DSS services 102 70 48 73% 151 71%
Type of co-located service
Family services 48 33 26 39 74 35
Specialist: alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist Family Domestic Violence, sexual assault 29 20 20 30 49 23
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 23 16 16 24 39 18
Youth services 24 16 10 15 34 16
Out-of-home care 16 11 6 9 22 10
Financial 15 10 10 15 25 12
Education 15 10 2 3 17 8
Disability 13 9 4 6 17 8
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 12 8 8 12 20 9
Child protection agencies 12 8 5 8 17 8
Employment 9 6 1 2 10 5
Legal (e.g. legal assistance, family law, courts) 2 1 3 5 5 2
Police 2 1 1 2 3 1
Table A14: DSS funded services most commonly co-located with respondents' service (by geographic remoteness)
  Metro Inner regional Outer regional/remote
  n % n % n %
Co-located with ANY DSS service 95 85 40 87 40 74
Type of co-located service
Family Law Services 53 47 23 50 20 38
Other Family and Relationship Services (FaRS) 56 50 21 46 14 27
Children and Parenting Support 34 30 13 28 18 35
Financial Counselling, Wellbeing and Capability 22 20 7 15 14 27
Other Specialised Family Violence Services (SFVS) 22 20 4 9 7 13
Emergency Relief 20 18 2 4 10 19
Intensive Family Support Services 12 11 4 9 14 27
Communities for Children Facilitating Partner 3 3 5 11 10 19
Community Mental Health 9 8 3 7 4 8
Personal Helpers and Mentors Service (PHaMS) 3 3 4 9 6 12
Table A15: Non-DSS funded services most commonly co-located with respondents' service (by geographic remoteness)
  Metro
( n = 80)
Inner regional
( n = 35)
Outer regional/remote
( n = 35)
  n % n % n %
Co-located with ANY non-DSS service 80 71 35 76 35 65
Type of co-located service
Family services 39 35 23 55 12 21
Specialist (alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist FDV) 33 29 9 21 7 13
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 15 13 13 31 11 20
Youth services 16 14 10 24 8 14
Out-of-home care 12 11 5 12 5 9
Financial 14 13 4 10 7 13
Education 14 13 2 5 1 2
Disability 9 8 1 2 7 13
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 13 12 2 5 5 9
Child protection agencies 11 10 2 5 4 7
Employment 8 7 1 2 1 2
Legal 4 4 0 0 1 2
Police 2 2 0 1 1 2

Note: Data on remoteness not available for all respondents.

Table A16: Procedures and protocols for managing risk and safety
  Average score out of 5 Agree or strongly agree (%)
  SFVs FaRS SFVs FaRS
The service I work for has procedures and protocols that support me to:
Identify safety concerns for my client 4.7 4.5 100 96
Identify safety concerns for other family members 4.6 4.4 98 92
Identify safety concerns for myself or other workers 4.6 4.4 92 96
Work with clients to reduce or minimise the violence 4.6 4.3 100 90
Work to reduce or minimise the violence for other family members 4.5 4.3 98 89
Manage safety concerns for myself or other workers 4.5 4.4 96 92
Refer my client and/or other family members to other relevant services 4.5 4.4 94 94
Manage critical incidents 4.4 4.3 94 90
Receive the support I need after a critical incident 4.4 4.2 88 86
Table A17: Service demands by service type (FaRS or SFVS)
  Total (%)
( n = 126)
FaRS (%)
( n = 96)
SFVS (%)
( n = 30)
Frequency with which practitioners felt overwhelmed by their caseload
Never 8 10 0
Rarely 23 24 20
Sometimes 50 50 50
Often 17 14 27
Always 2 2 3
Frequency with which managers felt service overwhelmed by demand (n = 86) (n = 57) (n = 29)
Never 6 7 3
Rarely 15 14 17
Sometimes 42 39 48
Often 30 35 21
Always 7 5 10
Effects of service demand on client needs      
Percentage of services' clients seen within a time frame appropriate to their needs/presenting issue 74 75 71
Percentage of services' clients who reported experiencing increased risk or more entrenched problems because of waiting times? 16 16 16
Percentage of services' clients who had to be referred to another service? 12 12 12
Table A18: FaRS and SFVS service user issues - frequency of encounters
How often do you deal with the following issues? Score out of 5 (average of responses on scale 1-5) Often/always deal with these issues (%)
  Total SFVs FaRS Total SFVs FaRS
Family relationships 4.6 4.7 4.4 97 97 97
Family violence 4.0 3.8 4.4 82 100 76
Alcohol and other drugs 3.4 3.4 3.4 44 43 45
Mental health 3.9 3.9 3.8 77 69 79
Gambling 2.5 2.5 2.5 7 7 7
Homelessness 2.5 2.4 2.8 12 14 12
Parenting 4.3 4.3 4.1 87 83 89
Elder abuse 2.0 1.9 2.1 3 3 3
Legal issues 3.2 3.2 3.3 46 52 44
Adolescent violence 2.7 2.6 3.0 15 21 13
Disability 2.6 2.6 2.5 51 52 51
Cultural issues 3.1 3.2 3.0 32 24 34
Exposure of children to family violence 3.7 3.6 4.1 68 86 63
Child abuse and/or child safety and/or child neglect 3.3 3.3 3.5 45 59 41
Emotional abuse and/or anger issues 4.1 4.0 4.3 88 100 84

Note: Totals based on scale 1-5 with 1= Never deal with these issues and 5 = Always deal with these issues.

Table A19: Respondents' assessments of service ability and skills in assisting specific community groups
  Score out of 5 (average of responses) Responses agree/ strongly agree (%)
  Total SFVs FaRS Total SFVs FaRS
Our service has the ability and skills to assist CALD clients 3.9 3.8 3.9 75 74 75
Our service has the ability and skills to assist ATSI clients 3.9 3.8 4.0 77 72 79
Our service has the ability and skills to assist clients with disability 3.8 3.8 3.8 69 68 74
Our service has the ability and skills to assist LGBTI clients 3.9 3.9 3.9 78 78 77

Note: Totals based on scale 1-5 with 1 = Strongly disagree and 5 = Strongly agree.

Table A20: Respondent confidence in their services' skills and knowledge
  Score out of 5 (average of responses) Responses agree/ strongly agree (%)
  Total SFVs FaRS Total SFVs FaRS
Prevention 3.6 3.4 3.7 59 57 60
Intake and assessment 4.2 4.3 4.2 89 95 86
Early intervention 3.6 3.4 3.7 62 57 65
Service delivery (with individuals, couples, families) 4.5 4.5 4.5 96 98 95
Crisis intervention 3.8 4.0 3.7 69 75 66
Client follow-up and assessment of outcomes 3.5 3.4 3.5 54 49 57
Supervision and professional development 4.0 4.0 3.9 80 75 82
Trialling innovative approaches to service provision 3.4 3.2 3.4 51 49 51

Note: Totals based on scale 1-5 with 1 = Strongly disagree and 5 = Strongly agree.

Table A21: Practitioner self-assessments of current skills and knowledge
  Score out of 5 (average of responses) Responses good/excellent (%)
  SFVs FaRS SFVs FaRS
Work with individuals, couples and families to improve their relationships 4.4 4.3 97 98
Work with parents to improve their parenting and focus on the needs of their children 4.5 4.2 86 97
Work with individuals, couples and families with complex needs 4.3 4.3 89 88
Work with victims of violence 4.1 4.5 89 77
Work with clients who use violence 3.6 4.0 65 57
Work with families where children have experienced child abuse and/or neglect 3.9 4.2 79 74
Refer clients in cases involving family violence to appropriate services 4.3 4.6 89 87
Refer clients who may be suicidal or at immediate risk of self-harm to appropriate services, if necessary 4.3 4.5 93 92
Refer clients in cases where child abuse and/or neglect is apparent 4.3 4.5 91 93

Note: Totals based on scale 1-5 with 1 = Very poor (level of skills and/or knowledge) and 5 = Excellent (level of skills and/or knowledge).

Table A22: Expressed need for capacity building to improve service provision - most common responses
  SFVS (%) FaRS (%) Total (%)
Working with perpetrators 28 50 44
Measuring client outcomes 38 34 35
Behaviour change programs 17 39 33
Risk assessment 15 4 24
Child-centred approaches 23 23 23
Cultural competency 36 16 22
Working with people with a disability 32 16 21
Working with children/young people 25 19 20
Identifying and responding to violence 15 22 20
Working with the elderly 19 9 12
Table A23: Respondents' rating of their service's capacity to engage with and refer to other services
  Score out of 5 (average of responses) Responses excellent/good (%)
  Total SFVs FaRS Total SFVs FaRS
Family services 4.3 4.2 4.3 88 90 87
Child protection agencies 4.3 4.3 4.3 87 83 89
Financial 3.9 3.9 3.9 70 66 71
Legal (e.g. legal assistance, family law courts) 4.1 4.2 4.1 78 83 77
Health (e.g. community health centre, mental health) 4.0 3.9 4.1 76 72 77
Housing (e.g. short-term crisis refuge accommodation) 3.7 3.9 3.7 62 69 59
Education 3.7 3.6 3.7 61 52 64
Police 4.1 4.0 4.1 78 76 78
Specialist: alcohol or other drugs, gambling, specialist FDV, sexual assault 4.1 4.2 4.0 79 79 79

Note: Totals based on scale 1-5 with 1 = Very poor (level of skills and/or knowledge) and 5 = Excellent (level of skills and/or knowledge).

Table A24: Respondents' assessment of service capacity by service type (over last 12 months)
  Location Strongly disagree Disagree Neither Agree Strongly agree Total (n)
    n(%) n(%) n(%) n(%) n(%)  
Our service has enough staff to meet service user demands FaRS 15(11) 47(35) 23(17) 40(30) 9(7) 134
SFVS 8(14) 31(53) 10(17) 7(12) 2(3) 58
Total 23(12) 78(41) 33(17) 47(24) 11(6) 193
Our service has enough staff to adequately intake and assess clients, including their safety FaRS 9(7) 29(22) 16(12) 67(50) 13(10) 134
SFVS 1(2) 17(29) 12(21) 25(43) 3(5) 58
Total 10(5) 46(23) 28(15) 92(48) 16(8) 193
Our service has enough staff to identify and respond to changing needs in our community FaRS 12(9) 43(32) 32(24) 39(29) 8(6) 134
SFVS 1(2) 31(53) 18(31) 7(12) 1(2) 58
Total 13(7) 74(39) 50(26) 46(24) 9(5) 193
Our service has the capacity to follow up clients (e.g. around referral outcomes) FaRS 9(7) 39(29) 26(19) 48(36) 12(9) 134
SFVS 5(9) 28(48) 8(14) 15(26) 2(3) 58
Total 14(7) 67(35) 34(18) 63(33) 14(7) 193
Our service has the capacity to provide prevention and early intervention services FaRS 9(7) 29(22) 34(26) 44(33) 18(13) 134
SFVS 5(9) 19(33) 10(17) 23(40) 1(2) 58
Total 14(7) 48(25) 44(23) 67(35) 19(10) 193
Table A25: Respondents' assessment of service capacity by location (over last 12 months)
  Location Strongly disagree Disagree Neither Agree Strongly agree Total (n)
    n(%) n(%) n(%) n(%) n(%)  
Our service has enough staff to meet service user demands Metro 10(10) 43(43) 17(17) 26(26) 4(4) 100
Inner regional 7(17) 19(45) 8(19) 6(14) 2(5) 42
Outer region/remote 6(12) 16(32) 8(16) 15(30) 5(10) 50
Our service has enough staff to adequately intake and assess clients, including their safety Metro 3(3) 23(23) 16(16) 50(50) 8(8) 100
Inner regional 4(10) 13(31) 4(10) 18(43) 3(7) 42
Outer region/remote 3(6) 10(20) 8(16) 24(48) 5(10) 50
Our service has enough staff to identify and respond to changing needs in our community Metro 6(6) 40(40) 27(27) 22(22) 5(5) 100
Inner regional 3(7) 18(43) 13(31) 7(17) 1(2) 42
Outer region/remote 4(8) 16(32) 10(20) 17(34) 3(6) 50
Our service has the capacity to follow up clients (e.g. around referral outcomes) Metro 6(6) 42(42) 18(18) 29(29) 5(5) 100
Inner regional 4(10) 15(36) 4(10) 15(36) 4(10) 42
Outer region/remote 4(8) 10(20) 12(24) 19(38) 5(10) 50
Our service has the capacity to provide prevention and early intervention services Metro 8(8) 33(33) 18(18) 32(32) 9(9) 100
Inner regional 2(5) 7(17) 15(36) 15(36) 3(7) 42
Outer region/remote 4(8) 8(16) 11(22) 20(40) 7(14) 50