The Australian Childhood Foundation offers expert trauma counselling for young people and children who have in the course of their lives experienced abuse. It offers community based child abuse prevention activities, restorative out of home care programs, parenting education, professional training and education, and resource programs.
Initially developed by the Australian Council for Children and Youth Organisations (ACCYO), as the Safeguarding Children Program, it merged in July 2009 with the Australian Childhood Foundation with a goal to expanding the success and reach of the program. The expanded Safeguarding Children Program is now being operated and managed by the Australian Childhood Foundation. This is a national non-profit organisation dedicated to the child abuse prevention.
The program is a unique accredited scheme for voluntary organisations that have taken upon themselves a duty of care for young persons and children while they deliver an activity or service to them as well as to their families. It is methodically building the capacity of such organisations towards keeping children and the young people protected from exploitation and abuse by volunteers, staff, or other pertinent associated individuals. Organisations like child care centres, schools, youth and social groups, welfare groups, sporting clubs, are playing a crucial role in the well-being, care, health, and education of the young people and children.
The Australian Childhood Foundation Program offers the resources for supporting organisations meeting evidence based standards which eventually lessen the threat of children abuse and young people by volunteers and employees. This is achieved through enabling organisations to;
- Make out those factors increasing a child's susceptibility to maltreatment
- Become aware of those vulnerabilities which might be indicative of a need to monitor, assess, or restrain the behaviour of certain individuals in their relation to young people and children within organisations
- Generate an environment limiting the prospects for children being maltreated
- Grow and sustain a culture that is transparent, respectful and child-focused
- Put into practice an all-inclusive framework ensuring appropriate guidelines and policies for all those individuals connected with each organisation.
The Australian Childhood Foundation website gives details concerning the process of accreditation, the resources that are required by the Program and opportunities of engaging with ongoing updates regarding methods of improving your organization's capacity to give better protection children and the vulnerable young people from exploitation and abuse.
Childhood Foundation Vision
The vision is to have children that are protected from the trauma of violence, abuse and neglect.
Childhood Foundation Mission
The Australian Childhood Foundation mission is to:
- Apply the proof from neuroscience for helping children mend from the hurt of neglect and abuse
- Promote and create secure and stable healthy relationships for all the children
- Work jointly to get a collective impact on all the lives of those children and families traumatized by abuse and neglect
- Be relentless in campaigning for the requirements of children that are vulnerable
- Educate and enable the communities in safeguarding children.
The Australian Childhood Foundation Work
Australian Childhood Foundation believes that each child has got the right of being a child.
A part of the childhood magic is to be surrounded by people that will never for a moment let us ever doubt for that indeed we are truly loved. The feeling of safety and assurance coming from understanding that as children we got in our lives adults that will ever care about us and for us, grants us the self-confidence to investigate our world, dare ourselves, take some bold risks, and even dare to dream big, in the safe knowledge that there always be somebody there ready to catch us whenever we fall down. The powerful sense of security assists the child in growing, developing and in learning. It assists us kids to forge those crucial connections which make us who we are today; it offers the basis for our current family relationships, our friendships, and our larger community. It aids in gaining a strong sense of self. It assists us in finding that special and unique place in the big world that belongs to us and us alone.
Children that have been neglected or abused don't normally get that kind of solid foundation from which they could develop these critical connections. The associated trauma of those sad experiences tends to rob children of the needed relationships for their wellbeing and growth. It will have stolen their sense of security, their capacity to trust others, steals their own self-confidence, and their aptitude of learning. It steals the steals their magic, child's carefree innocence and ultimately it steals the very childhood. What is left behind are devastating scars - the kind of scars that have cut very deeply to be able to heal on their own.
Across Australia, in 2011-12 there were some 252,962 reported cases of child neglect and abuse, which would equate to roughly 1 report in every two minutes. For children to recover, they require support and specialized help. The Australian Childhood Foundation through its range of expert counselling services is working towards giving children back the stolen childhoods. Australian Childhood Foundation is working to assist children who know only shame, anger, fear, the deepest hurt and loneliness and, to be to re-connect with the world: to re-learn how to trust, to begin feeling safe again, to start developing their lost self-confidence, to laugh once again, to dream, to play, to hope, to imagine, and to be once again loved.Australian Childhood Foundation is also demonstrating to funding bodies, governments and other relevant stakeholders a continuing organizational dedication to quality improvement and best practice in relation to the security of young people and children.
Australian Childhood Foundation Resources
Upon signing up for accreditation, qualifying organisations may access some of following resources within their annual accreditation payment or fee.
- Advice and support towards implementing effective child protection procedures and policies meeting the standards set for Safeguarding Children accreditation.
- Protocols promoting the safe staffing and supervision of volunteers and staff.
- Face to face and online training and induction packages for volunteers, staff, management and Board ensuring that policies safeguarding children are understood and implemented consistently.
- An organization's audit that is independent on the operational framework which is benchmarked alongside a bunch of evidence-based standards.
- Receive regular updates in relation to changes to policy, legislative, and practice developments both internationally and nationally concerning protecting children and young people oriented organisations.
- Communication tools enabling child organisations reinforce their safeguarding practices to all their volunteers and staff.
- Accessibility to a responsive organisations debriefing service during critical child protection incidents.
- Accessibility of advice concerning ways of responding to situations and allegations of concern related to young people and children.