Building a child-safe, child-friendly Bathurst

This week I had the pleasure of attending the Bathurst Child and Family Network (BCFN) conference on ‘Working to build child-safe, child-friendly communities’. It was a lively and inspiring gathering, bringing together a large number of people who are working to support children, families and communities.

BCFN is working to achieve its vision of Bathurst as ‘child-safe, child-friendly’ through workforce development and grassroots collaborative approaches to establish positive child and family-centred child-safe changes to work practices across all sectors working with children and families in the area. BCFN says, rightly in my opinion, that ‘it takes a village to raise a child’. Its mission is for children and families to belong in a happy, healthy and safe Bathurst.

My presentations at the conference focussed on the national picture in relation to child safety and wellbeing, as well the burgeoning national Child Aware movement. I discussed the latest developments in relation to the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020 and suggested some ways in which we could go further in making child safety and wellbeing a lasting national priority. I also talked about the Child Aware National Initiative—a key aspect of the National Framework—particularly the Child Aware Approaches Conferences, the Child Aware Local Initiative, and the Child Aware Principles and Practices Guide. These presentations are available here. More information about the Child Aware National Initiative is available here.

With very best wishes to BCFN!


Dr Brian Babington

Chief Executive Officer

29 June 2016