This Foster Care Week we join in the call for carers to be supported with the basics such as birth certificates and Medicare cards, to be unburdened by the financial pressure to pay for health and education expenses that aren’t covered by the care allowance.
National Child Protection Week
More than ever before National Child Protection Week reminds us that every child, in every community, needs the opportunity to thrive, be safe and be loved.
This year the National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) is calling for fair treatment for all Australian children, by ensuring every family and community has what kids need to thrive and be healthy.
Protecting children is everyone’s business sadly, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s Child Protection Australia report, more than 174,000 children received child protection services in Australia during 2019-20.
“Way too many Australian children required child protection services last year, and more than half were repeat clients. It is imperative we focus on putting children first through greater investment in evidence-based programs, it is the only way we will see better outcomes being achieved,”says OzChild Chief Executive Officer, Dr Lisa Griffiths.
“Family and foster carers are vital when children cannot stay safely at home, but Covid has placed additional stressors on families, the out-of-home care system, and carers. Foster carers are exiting the system at alarming rates. We cannot continue to rely on the recruitment of carers to solve the child protection crisis,” adds Dr Griffiths.
In Victoria, the growth in OOHC is the fastest in the nation – a grim reality for the state which has endured the harshest and longest lockdowns. With more than 45,000 children already in OOHC across Australia, an additional 4,500 children are estimated to enter OOHC because of the pandemic – put simply, we do not have enough carers.
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