Saturday, 18 August 2007

Launch of ParentSupport Service in Fremantle: Minister

The protection of children in the Fremantle area has been boosted with the launch of the South Metropolitan ParentSupport Service.

WA Child Protection Minister Sue Ellery launched the service which promotes effective parenting as a key factor in preventing crime and harm to children.

ParentSupport is the service delivery arm of the State Government’s Responsible Parenting Initiative, which was introduced three years ago to address growing community concerns about anti-social and criminal behaviour displayed by young children. Some of these behaviours include truancy, bullying, vandalism, violence, fire setting, theft and drug use.

Ms Ellery said there were many factors influencing a child’s development and their parents’ capacity to parent effectively.

“There is now clear evidence to show that poor and inconsistent parenting contributes to the development of child behaviour problems,” she said.

“Effective parenting includes nurturing, protecting, teaching and supporting children as they grow and learn how to behave and relate to others in the wider community.

“Children don’t come with a ‘how-to’ manual. ParentSupport is an evidenced based service designed to assist families gain these vital parenting skills.”

ParentSupport provides parents who are experiencing difficulty with the skills to manage their children’s behaviour and provides a safe and encouraging environment. Skilled caseworkers work collaboratively with parents and other specialist agencies to help parents.

The service has also developed an intervention model to meet the needs of ‘hard to reach’ parents with health or mental issues or those reluctant to engage with a support service.

ParentSupport Services have already helped more than 350 families in the east and south-east metropolitan region in the past two and a half years with 91 per cent reporting they are now parenting more effectively.

The State Government has committed $20.4million over four years to implement ParentSupport services State-wide.

Services in the south metropolitan police district started in July 2007 and will be phased into the north metropolitan region, including Stirling, Bayswater, Wanneroo and Joondalup, early next year. A remote service delivery model will begin in the Kimberley early next year.

Source: Ministerial Media Release

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