In Victoria during 2018-19, 34 children aged 10-13 years were in detention and all were unsentenced. While the number of children is low, the costs of incarceration to these children, their families, their communities and society are high.
OzChild Achieve Australian First
OzChild’s Treatment Foster Care Oregon program in Melbourne’s South East is not only saving vulnerable kids from a lifetime of disadvantage, but is the first in Australia to receive certification.
Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO) is changing life outcomes for some of Victoria’s most vulnerable children. Children who, through no fault of their own, have ended up in residential care or alternative accommodation such as hotels following kinship or foster care placement breakdowns, often after many previous placement changes.
Launched in April 2017 in partnership with the Victorian Government, OzChild’s TFCO team based in Dandenong have so far supported 11 children under the age of 12 through the program, seeing them returned safely to the care of family, or placed with a permanent, long-term foster carer.
“Kids belong in homes, not in residential care facilities. To see our TFCO-C team in Victoria certified by Treatment Foster Care Consultants Inc in Eugene Oregon, really cements the incredible outcomes being achieved, this is an exciting step and means they are the first Australian team to be certified,” says OzChild Chief Executive Officer, Dr Lisa J. Griffiths.
“This program is achieving results consistent with randomised control trials conducted internationally and is demonstrating a significant return on investment reflecting cost savings of 50-65% when compared with residential care, representing an average saving of $900 per day. Importantly 70% of children graduating from the TFCO program have exited residential care and sustained placement in a home-based care environment.
“This demonstrates the very real need for continued investment into the program in Victoria,” explains Michelle Van Doorn, National Executive Director of Services at OzChild.
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