Conference Resources

Practice Conference 2019 - Videos now live!


Helping troubled kids find a way back: Bernie Shakeshaft - ABC Conversations – 53 mins

More than Just a kid in Care: Belonging episode – 22mins

How Bobbi found her forever home: ABC Life Matters – 14 mins

Screenings (Breakout Session):

Ghosthunter is a powerful and haunting Australian documentary about one man’s search to understand the trauma of his childhood and how this has shaped his belonging now. As he pieces together his past we learn the importance of doing so in order to reclaim the future. We explore ways that complex trauma can impact on a child’s ability to develop a sense of belonging within themselves and in relationships with others.

Backtrack Boys is a soul-moving documentary about a group of boys in trouble with the law and Bernie — the rough talking, big hearted jackaroo who takes them in. The boys’ ability to trust and show tenderness builds as they care for their show-jumping dogs. And a belonging emerges as they experience a steady and consistent love from Bernie and the whole Backtrack gang. This is a story about the power of love and chasing hopes and dreams. Learn a different way connect with teenagers who experience challenges by understanding what they’re running from, using empathy, kind boundary setting and dependability.

Culture Hub (Breakout Session): 

Culture is belonging. Conference attendees were invited to explore a vibrant hub of cultural experiences to deepen their appreciation about how culture shapes the belonging for individuals, families and communities — within themselves and with each other. This booklet offers a high level overview from the session and asks us to think about the critical importance of children’s and family’s everyday experiences of culture and how this can inform your approach to conversations, assessments, case planning and goals for children. 
Download booklet here

Partnering for Safety Approach (Breakout Session):

Practice guru Sonja Parker delves deeper into how to thoughtfully and skillfully work in partnership with parents, children and their network to build stronger, safer families. Sonja brings together two of our Practice Frameworks practice approaches — and tools from Safety Centred Practice – to build capability and confidence to actively partner for children’s safety and ensure assessments are stronger.
Download PowerPoint presentation here

Skills Fair (Breakout Session):

Attendees explored the ‘doing’ of belonging practice across an interactive range of skill-building activities, displays and quizzes. A wonderful opportunity to assess, build and support belonging for children and families through the Practice Framework and the five Practice Capabilities.  

Relevant resources can be found below:

We work with families, communities and other services to create a team around the child. We recognise the diverse expertise of all the people in the child’s life and the important perspectives they bring. We understand that working for children, means working together across the sector. Together we keep our focus on what the child needs, and base our negotiations and collaboration from this perspective.

Who else in DCJ can help me work this out – This poster can be put around a CSC to remind practitioners and leaders of the practice principle of creating/maintaining relationships and importance of collaboration to share worries/expertise around creating change and achieving the best outcomes for a family.

Team around practitioner and child poster is a visual reminder of whom a practitioner can link in and connect with each time they engage with and start a relationship with a family.

The child wellbeing wheel poster highlights the indicators of wellbeing that impact a child and the follow on effect for family and community when each need is being met. They are wellbeing indicators which help make it easier for children and families and the people working with them to discuss how a child or young person is doing at a point in time and if there is a need for support.

Building lifelong connections
Children need connections to people who make them feel loved, important and safe. We collaborate with children or young people and their family to understand their broader kinship network and non-relatives who have played an important role in their life.

Working with family and culture
Every child is part of a family system, community and culture. To be child focused, we must also be family focused. We take the time to understand and respect a family’s culture, values and beliefs and we tailor our approach to their needs. We view the family as the experts in their culture. We understand that often it is not just people who are important to the child, but also places and practices.

The cultural iceberg poster is a visual of intricacies within culture that lie behind the surface of culture such as traditional food, clothing and language. So, like an iceberg, there are things that we can see and describe easily... but there are also many deeply rooted ideas that we can only understand by analyzing values, studying formative factors, and in many cases, reflecting on our own core values.

The child wellbeing wheel poster highlights the indicators of wellbeing that impact a child and the follow on effect for family and community when each need is being met. They are wellbeing indicators which help make it easier for children and families and the people working with them to discuss how a child or young person is doing at a point in time and if there is a need for support.

Cultural bubble activity can used within a team, unit or group supervision setting to raise/start conversations about knowing our own cultures first to then understand other’s deep rooted cultures. To support engagement that is understanding and tailored.

We view assessment as an ongoing holistic process that continually takes place regardless of where a child lives. Assessment informs our understanding of their safety, experiences and needs. We keep children’s safety at the forefront of our minds when we are working with families. We seek to understand the child's daily-lived experience to better understand how safe they are and how safe they feel.

Circles of safety and support booklet by Sonja Parker - A tool to help parents identify people for their family’s safety and support network.

Finding a way kit PDF – recognising child sexual abuse and responding to children and young people with intellectual disability

Influencing change
We are guided by the aspirations of the family and we seek to understand the causes and context of the issues they face. We bring hope to the work we do with children and families and work alongside them to create this change.

OARS prompt sheet – a prompt sheet to support practitioners with practical conversations on how to use Open-ended questions, Affirmations, Reflective listening and Summaries to evoke change talk and reasons for change.  

Charmed and dangerous guide – this booklet focuses on Women being about to reclaiming a healthy relationship. Harnessing values of trust, respect, positive communication, equality and honesty.

Keynote presentations:

Sonja Parker is an independent social worker and child protection consultant from Perth, Western Australia. Sonja has worked in both government and non-government child protection roles, in investigation, children-in-care, as well as reunification and family preservation programmes. Through her work with families and her training and consultation with agencies and practitioners, Sonja has developed a number of tools, processes and resources to assist child protection professionals and family members in working together more effectively to build future safety for children.
Download Presentation here

Jackie Wruck is a proud Aboriginal Yindinji woman from Far North Queensland, Yarrabah region and Cultural Practice Advisor with Child Safety, Caboolture, QLD. Jackie’s own experience of domestic and family violence led her to becoming a certified Safe & Together trainer, and a lead facilitator of ‘Walking with Dads’, a program that works with, and walks with fathers who have perpetrated violence in their families. Working with families all of her life, Jackie is a vocal advocate for families and passionate about keeping children out of the child protection system and making sure families voices are heard.
Download Presentation here

Nicole Lee is a family violence survivor and passionate advocator. After suffering a decade of abuse at the hands of her former husband, Nicole now uses her lived-experience of family violence to speak out for those who don’t yet have a voice. Nicole, who also uses a wheelchair, focuses on family violence perpetrated against those who have a disability, or who depend on carers or family members for support. Nicole Lee has played a major role in shaping how Victoria responds, and works to prevent, family violence. The level and type of engagement is unseen in other jurisdictions both in Australia and overseas.
Download Presentation here

Cathy Humphreys is Professor of Social Work at University of Melbourne.  She is co-chair of the Melbourne research Alliance to End Violence Against Women and Their Children (MAEVe) and one of the lead investigators on the Safer Families Centre for Research Excellence. Her current research projects include: evaluations of recovery and healing programs for women and children; evaluation of Caring Dads; and the STACY project (Safe & Together Addressing Complexity) which explores the interface between child protection, domestic violence, mental health and drug and alcohol services. Cathy worked as a practitioner for 16 years before becoming a social work academic.
Download Presentation here

Shining a light on good practice:
Shining a light on good practice tells the real stories of children, young people, families and their work with DCJ child protection practitioners.

These are stories of strength, partnership and perseverance that rarely get shared with a wider audience.

Shining a light gives these stories a platform to be shared and celebrated. For families they are a source of pride and a testament to others that lives can change. For practitioners, they are a place to model and praise the best of their work – which is tenacious, skilled and compassionate.

Each story demonstrates how the NSW Practice Framework is helping to transform child protection practice in NSW.

Read and watch the 2019 stories here:


Short Films:

Ayan Shirwa -There’s only one way to be a successful refugee right?
10:26 mins

Murrenda - Ngaga dji (Hear me)
2:40 mins

Will Hill’s Yarn - Rock Bottom
2 mins

Akuol Garang – Where do I belong? And I here or am I there?
8:40 mins

Aboriginal Perspectives on Wellbeing
1:50 mins

Fadak Alfayadh – The decline of refugee rights is actually the decline of all of our rights.
8:24 mins

An Aboriginal Man’s Response to Australia Day - ‘Hate He Said’ – Steven Oliver

Intergenerational Trauma Animation