Western Australia Minister for Child Protection Robyn McSweeney
Western Australia Minister for Regional Development Brendon Grylls
Responsible Parenting Services Expanded To Murchison/Great Southern
Victor P Taffa
Child Protection Minister Robyn McSweeney today joined Regional Development Minister Brendon Grylls in Carnarvon to detail the expansion of vital parenting services currently provided in the Metropolitan Area to the Murchison and Great Southern Regions.
Royalties for Regions would provide $2.8 Million in funding for 2010-11 with a further $24.9 Million over the next three years to establish and expand the Department for Child Protection’s Responsible Parenting Services in regional areas.
Mrs. McSweeney said expansion of the program meant more accessible support for parents of children exhibiting, or at risk of developing, anti-social or truanting behaviours.
“Responsible Parenting comprises home visiting services to at-risk families and can help reduce the likelihood and ultimately prevent children from entering the department’s care.” the Minister said.
“In 2011-12, the $2.8 Million service will be expanded with an additional $3.7 Million for the Pilbara and Goldfields Regions, taking the annual allocation of funds to $6.5 Million.” Mrs. McSweeney said.
“The scheme will be further expanded to the Wheatbelt and South-West with $2.9 Million funding in 2012-13 and it is planned to continue this funding in the following financial year, taking the total of new and recurrent funding to almost $28 Million across four years.”
Mr. Grylls said the expansion would see two key programs, the Parent Support Service and Best Beginnings, established in 17 areas State-wide, including nine regional locations.
“Both programs have been successfully operating in the metropolitan area since 2004 and recently were introduced to the Kimberley region.”
“The programs provide early intervention into child protection and are designed to support families in raising their children.” Mr. Grylls said.
Mrs. McSweeney said the expansion represented 15 new full-time employees in the Murchison region alone in 2010-11 and access to a specialist service where methods used to work with families are culturally appropriate to the region.
Mrs. McSweeney said that a recent evaluation of the program had clearly identified the success of the service, particularly in the areas of improved parent-child relationships, increased confidence and the development of Parenting Skills.