Page 2073 - Week 07 - Tuesday, 2 August 2016

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course has been tailored to provide the foundational skills needed to provide therapeutic care as well as a more advanced course for carers or staff with existing expertise and experience. To date, 65 carers and 95 staff have attended these courses.

Further to this, in the ACT, like other jurisdictions, there is an over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people in care. The experience of trauma and intergenerational trauma is unique for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families. In recognition of these facts, courses specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers and carers looking after Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children have been developed and will be running this year.

Once this program has been completed, again our partners, ACT Together, will work with the Community Services Directorate to build an ongoing program of carer and staff support and training. The directorate, Uniting and ACT Together will develop and train people with high levels of expertise in positions of influence across their organisations to work as trauma-informed practice partners. These experts will be available to provide ongoing support for carers and staff as they develop their skills in providing trauma-informed care.

There are two services who work with a child’s support network and wider service system to build capacity to better meet the child’s developmental and therapeutic needs. The first, Melaleuca Place, was established in 2014. This service provides intensive assessment and intervention for children aged 0-12 presenting with symptoms consistent with developmental trauma. The service provides children with therapeutic support to heal from their traumatic experiences and achieve optimal development.

The second is the therapeutic assessment team. Under the strategy each child in care will receive a therapeutic assessment. The therapeutic assessment and planning service commenced in October 2015. Specialist assessors have started to assess children and young people coming into care. This assessment helps to identify techniques, supports and services that will help carers and those who know the child well to provide therapeutic support. Both Melaleuca and the therapeutic assessment team provide real-time support and education to help carers tailor the theory into practical action.

In response to the ongoing Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, the directorate has developed two specialist training packages relating to domestic and family violence and sexual abuse for front-line Child and Youth Protection Services’ staff. These training packages have been developed and presented in partnership with key organisations, including the Domestic Violence Crisis Service, ACT Policing, Corrective Services and the ACT Director of Public Prosecutions. The training incorporates providing a trauma-informed response to cumulative harm, screening and interventions, working with and engagement of the perpetrator, working with the non-offending parent, recognising violence and the impact on children and coercive control.

So, back to Lisa, under the initiatives through a step up for our kids, Lisa’s carer understands it will take time for Lisa to create a new relational template and that her

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