Parkerville to put Out of Home Care on world stage

Parkerville Children and Youth Care’s Out of Home Care team is set to join professionals from around the world for The International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) conference, streaming from Quebec City next week (28 to 30 March).

Principal Practice Lead, Johnny Rylatt and Learning Lead, Sarah Lewis will join Jethro Sercombe from Innovation Unit ANZ to share details of an innovative new program called ‘Our Way Home’. The program takes a radically personalised approach to shared care that’s based on the understanding that every child and young person has different needs and aspirations that must guide how care is provided.

Parkerville Children and Youth Care CEO, Kim Brooklyn said, “This conference provides a wonderful opportunity for the team to share our experience and learnings at a time when there is no doubt COVID-19 has impacted our social and community fabric, and it is widely anticipated that the most vulnerable children in our societies are among those who will suffer the most in the long run.

“We know that every child and every situation will be different, and in Our Way Home, the way we implement the model changes according to each child whilst staying true to our values.”

The development of this innovative new program was driven by a desire to transform the experience of children and young people in care and their families. In November 2019, Parkerville embarked on a co-design process in partnership with Innovation Unit ANZ and more than 150 service users including young people, families, carers, community group representatives, representatives from ACCOS, and survivors of the Stolen Generation.

In mid-2021, with funding from Lotterywest, Parkerville commenced prototyping this new model, and the response and outcomes have been overwhelmingly positive.

“One of the benefits of this approach is that it focusses on the family and ensuring that children remain closely connected to them, their community and culture in whatever form that might take to ensure that children have a strong sense of belonging,” Ms Brooklyn said.

“It also focusses on being flexible to meet the developmental and safety needs of children, while ensuring that the ecosystem around them is one that nourishes and nurtures them to be all that they can be.

“It involves learning more about who each child or young person really is – what and who is important to them; what their dreams and ambitions are for their future.

“It seeks out, brokers and sustains connections with family, community and culture, and forms new partnerships across the ‘care ecosystem’ to reduce the sense of stigma associated with being in care.”

Our Way Home adds to the range of other therapeutic, family support, early intervention and prevention, youth and out of home care services Parkerville provides to around 10,000 children, young people, and their families in metropolitan and across regional Western Australia each year.

As an accredited Child Safe Organisation delivering quality services, the Parkerville team’s dedication to valuing children and young people, and commitment to ensuring the voices of some of our community’s most vulnerable are heard all play an important role in ensuring they provide the best support and care possible in a safe environment.

Media enquiries and interviews

Kim Brooklyn

CEO, Parkerville Children and Youth Care

08 9235 7000

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