‘My Kids and Me’ win The Norma Parker Award for Most Innovative Program at the CSSA Annual Awards

Posted 23 October 2014 12:23pm
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Media Release

23 October 2014

CatholicCare Sydney and CatholicCare Wollongong are the joint winners of the Norma Parker Award for Most Innovative Program for My Kids and Me at the 2014 Catholic Social Services Australia Awards.

My Kids and Me is a unique seven-week program offering therapeutic and educational assistance to parents, whose children have been removed and placed in out-of-home care, with the aim of building and maintaining connections and positive relationships with their children. The program was jointly established, and continues to be conducted, by CatholicCare Sydney and CatholicCare Wollongong

Unlike many parent education programs where parents are learning how to improve on their parenting skills, My Kids and Me is tailored to the needs of parents who are not living with their child/children. It allows parents to share, in a non-judgemental setting, the experience of having their child/children removed, understand the reasons as to why the child/children might have been removed, and to come to terms with the real possibly that restoration may not be an option.

This program is true early intervention. Not only does it work with the parents to acknowledge the loss of this particular child, but it assists them in recognising changes that may need to be made in their parenting of future children.

Judges for the Catholic Social Services Australia Award commended the fact that My Kids and Me is addressing a very significant need in the community. “This is a difficult area to work in but addresses a clear gap with an innovative approach,” noted the judges. “Not only does it work with the parents to acknowledge the loss of this particular child, but it assists them in recognising changes that may need to be made in their parenting of future children”.

The program has been evaluated by the Australian Centre for Child Protection at the University of South Australia.

The 12th Annual Catholic Social Services Australia Awards were announced on Tuesday evening at Parliament House, Canberra in the presence of Senators and Members of Federal Parliament.

Catholic Social Services Australia is the Catholic Church’s peak national body for social service agencies across the country. For over 50 years it has assisted its member agencies to promote a fairer, more inclusive society that reflects and supports the dignity, equality and participation for all people.

The Catholic Social Services Australia Awards pay tribute to the outstanding programmes, organisations and people, who work tirelessly and often quietly for a better life for vulnerable people within our communities.

Media queries, including high resolution images, please contact Chris Norris on (02) 6285 1366

For more information on ‘My Kids and Me’ please contact CatholicCare on (02) 9509 1111

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