OzChild in partnership with Anglicare and the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency are trialling Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO), an innovative evidence-based model of foster care aiming to keep at-risk kids out of residential care and in a loving, stable home.
The model is an Australian first and the announcement was picked up by media outlets in Victoria.
The Age: ‘Give us a family’: professional foster carers to care for most vulnerable kids
When the call comes, often late at night, foster carer Vicci Henderson always reminds the social worker to pack nappies and bottles.
Make sure the kids are rugged up warm against the cold air, she says. Not just pyjamas, a dressing gown as well.
And when children arrive – anyone from a young baby to five siblings – Vicci knows they will be anxious, and very hungry. Food, warmth and reassurance are a start. But some of these children will need much more.
For the first time in Australia, Victoria will trial the use of “professional” foster carers to support some of the most traumatised children in the state’s out-of-home care system.
In a bid to reduce the number of young people in residential care, professional foster carers will look after a young person full time in their home for around nine months.
Bayside News and Frankston Times: New foster care model trialled
MORNINGTON Peninsula and Frankston foster carers may soon have the opportunity to transform the way vulnerable children and young people are supported under a new model of foster care.
Under the internationally-recognised model, professionalised foster carers will be trained to provide intensive support for children and young people who experience significant emotional or behavioural problems.
774 ABC Melbourne: OzChild foster carer Glenda Quinn on Drive
Following the TFCO announcement, Rafael Epstein interviewed Minister for Families the Hon. Jenny Mikakos and OzChild’s resident “veteran” foster carer Glenda Quinn who has cared for over 100 children. Glenda welcomed the trial.
“The numbers of children who have come into care over the last few years has risen, and this is a way that another country has worked out how to decrease those numbers,” Glenda said. “It’s worked for them successfully. I’m excited about this opportunity that OzChild has, to be in the forefront and make this part of foster care.”
“I think this is a great way forward, and a great proactive way to give the best outcomes to the kids.”