Three stronger families initiatives for 2017

To kick-start the new year, I’d like to give you the ‘heads-up’ on three especially important upcoming events for Families Australia.

Advancing a child aware nation. On 14-15 May we will hold the Child Aware Approaches Conference in Brisbane. This will be an energetic, highly interactive conference, showcasing latest thinking from policy, practice and research on how to improve child safety and wellbeing. We’ve got a great line-up of keynote speakers, including Professor Brigid Daniel from Stirling University in Scotland, Professor Keith Kaufman from Portland State University, USA, Professor Frank Oberklaid OAM, Director of the Centre for Community Child Health at The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne and the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, and Ms Natalie Lewis, Chief Executive Officer of the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak.

Celebrating families. Between 15-21 May we will be running National Families Week, Australia’s annual celebration of the vital role that families play in our society. If the past is anything to go by, well over 100,000 people will participate in local events right around Australia. Why not join in the celebration? There’s more here.

Promoting child safety and wellbeing. I will be travelling around the country between March and May to convene a series of workshops on protecting children. These will focus on what’s been happening under the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020 – Australia’s inaugural national plan of action to tackle child abuse and neglect. The workshops will hear about developments under the Third Action Plan (2015-18), especially preventive efforts that focus on the first thousand days for a child. I also look forward to hearing your thoughts about future directions for the National Framework. More information will be coming out very soon.

Looking forward to working with you in the year ahead.