Evidence used to develop the Knowledge Circle Practice Profiles

We drew upon a number of resources to develop the criteria used for the Knowledge Circle Practice Profiles. Through these materials, we found the following elements of service delivery to be effective in delivering outcomes to vulnerable children and families:

  • Indigenous participation and involvement of the wider community in the planning, delivery and measurement of programs are critical in fostering greater trust and connectivity and enhancing community awareness.
  • Engagement strategies work best when Indigenous families are consulted about their needs, and services respond using holistic approaches that are delivered in a culturally sensitive manner.
  • The importance of delivering services in safe, comfortable and non-stigmatising venues helps to facilitate trust and engagement.
  • Multiple, intensive, targeted engagement strategies are needed to access and deliver outcomes for hard-to-reach families with multiple and complex needs.
  • Universal services are an effective strategy to provide a 'soft entry' gateway for clients to access support to more specialised services.
  • Interagency and inter-sectorial collaboration reflects a whole-of-community approach that allows networks to provide responses to multiple issues confronted by a specific population or to address a common issue.
  • Building relationships and establishing trust are a key ingredients to program effectiveness.
  • A mentoring approach to service delivery helps to achieve outcomes for various client groups, including at-risk youth, young parents and isolated parents.
  • Having trained, committed and reflective staff is considered essential in retaining program participants and in achieving program objectives.

References

Australian Social Inclusion Board (ASIB). (2011). Breaking Cycles of Disadvantage. Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Canberra: ASIB.

Atkinson, J. (2013). Trauma-informed services and trauma-specific care for Indigenous Australian children. Closing the Gap Resource Sheet No. 21. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Commissioner for Children and Young People WA (CCYP). (2012). Building Blocks: Best practice programs that improve the wellbeing of children and young people. Edition one. Subiaco: CCYP.

Day, A., Francisco, A. & Jones, R. (2013). Programs to improve interpersonal safety in Indigenous communities: evidence and issues. Issues paper No. 4. Produced for the Closing the Gap Clearinghouse. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Higgins, D. (2010). Community development approaches to safety and wellbeing of Indigenous children. Closing the Gap Resource Sheet. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Higgins, J.R. & Butler, N. (2007). Indigenous responses to child protection issues. Promising Practices in Out-of-Home Care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Carers, Children and Young People: Booklet 4. Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Lohoar, S. (2012). Safe and supportive Indigenous families and communities for children: A synopsis and critique of Australian research. CFCA Paper No. 7. Melbourne: Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) information exchange, Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Price-Robertson, R., Hunter, C., & Knight, K. (2011). Enhancing the wellbeing of children and young people: A showcase of best practice programs and services. Perth: Commissioner for Children and Young People,WA.

Price-Robertson, R. & McDonald, M. (2011). Working with Indigenous children, families and communities: Lessons from practice. Melbourne: Communities and Families Clearinghouse Australia (CAFCA), Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC). (2012). Improved outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families in early childhood education and care services. Melbourne: SNAICC.

Soriano, G., Clark, H. & Wise, S. (2008). Promising Practice Profiles: Final Report. A report prepared for the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs as part of the National Evaluation Consortium (Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW and the Australian Institute of Family Studies). Melbourne: Communities and Families Clearinghouse Australia  (CAFCA), Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Stewart, J., Lohoar, S. & Higgins, D. (2011). Effective practices for service delivery coordination in Indigenous communities. Closing the Gap Clearinghouse Resource Sheet 8. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.

Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency (VACCA). (2008). Aboriginal Cultural Competence Framework. Melbourne: Victorian Government Department of Human Services.

Wessels, I., Mikton, C., Ward, C.L., Kilbane, T., Alves, R., Campello, G., Dubowitz, H., Hutchings, J., Jones, L., Lynch, M. & Madrid, B. (2013). Preventing violence: Evaluating outcomes of parenting programmes. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.

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