The Smith Family’s story

BY The Smith Family| Posted December 4, 2019
The Smith Family’s story

An Aboriginal family of six comprising of Dad, Mum, and four children with significant learning difficulties, The Smith Family had not had a stable home in 20 years. There was a long history of methamphetamine abuse with both parents, employment problems, ongoing domestic violence, inadequate supervision of the children, neglect, and poor school attendance.

After being referred to the Functional Family Therapy – Child Welfare® (FFT-CW) program, the first step was to meet with the program therapist. Crucially, the therapist met with the whole family in their home where they felt most comfortable, listening to their family history and their current concerns and challenges both in and outside of the home.

After the initial assessment phase, the therapist worked on ways to implement changes in the family’s behavior; ensuring that their historical trauma and Aboriginal culture was respected at all times. Slowly but surely, the family and the therapist worked collaboratively on developing culturally appropriate ways to improve the family dynamics. 

The case has now been closed for over 12 months and there have been no further Risk Of Significant Harm (ROSH) reports.

For a family to have had constant engagement with services for decades to now have no input from services whatsoever is a significant achievement for The Smith Family and the Functional Family Therapy – Child Welfare® (FFT-CW) program

*Names changed to protect identities

Functional Family Therapy – Child Welfare® (FFT-CW)

Functional Family Therapy – Child Welfare® works with children, young people and their family or kin to help them strengthen relationships, improve communication and respond to challenging behaviours.

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