National Child Protection Week (NCPW) is all about the ways that we can all work together to build communities that support children and families.
As a Child Safe organisation, Samaritans is committed to providing safe environments where children's rights and child safety are embedded in the attitudes, behaviours and practices of those working at every level of the organisation.
We recently caught up with one of our Child and Family Case Managers from our Brighter Futures Program, Kat, who spoke about the importance of National Child Protection week and how we can help our children thrive.
Why is National Child Protection Week important?
It gives an opportunity for community awareness – a dedicated week for National Child Protection to be shared in the community is very important. It allows for conversation, focus and opportunity for so many, who wish to disclose, to be supported and understood as survivors of abuse. Carers and workers in the industry are recognised and although there is sadly a need for Child Protection, that it is recognised is empowering.
It is important to me as a survivor of child abuse, a Case Manager in Brighter Futures, and a mother of four. I feel it is all part of the healing, and I feel empowered that there is recognition and awareness.
What does the NCPW theme ‘Every child, in every community, needs a fair go’ mean to you and the work you do at Samaritans?
‘Every child, in every community, needs a fair go’ means to me and my work at Samaritans, that we are entrusted to uphold the ethos of ethical work within the entire community, no matter what their [a child’s] circumstance, background or cultural beliefs. Every single child is to be treated with dignity, respect, compassion, and due diligence. Thus, hoping to create stronger community, stronger children who will develop into adults who are aware and strengthen families and community. Breaking cycles of abuse and incorporating empowerment and recognition.
How can we help children to thrive and be happy?
By listening to children, respecting their time to build rapport and trust, talking with them, finding out what they would like to happen and what their interests are. Ensuring that they are heard, bringing it back to basics, partaking in activities that they enjoy and exploring their environment. Ensuring that their creativity and their space is respected. Praising efforts made and never, ever, belittling.