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Practice Approaches

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Family Practitioners utilise a variety of practice approaches to understand and support families’ cultural, social, and environmental circumstances. Determinations about which approaches to apply are informed by the presenting needs of the family and what will best support and increase the safety and wellbeing of the child/ren.

Culturally Inclusive Practice

A methodology which actively acknowledges the historical context and specificity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. The practitioner will incorporate the following in their practice:

  1. Culture is acknowledged as a strength, that will be supported for the development of social, economic, and cultural pathways towards individual and community safety and wellbeing.
  2. Strength based approaches that value and respect cultural identity and support the achievements of culturally responsive and responsible outcomes.
  3. Engage with active supports for the development and maintenance of meaningful connections with culture and community.
  4. Actively support and engage with the development of an individual sense of cultural identity and contribution to the vibrancy and diversity of communities and celebrated these.
  5. Practitioners that actively reflect upon their own culture to ensure that cultural difference is appreciated and respected, guarding against the attitude that ones’ own behaviours, beliefs and actions are the norm to which other people must conform.
  6. A recognition of our individual and collective responsibility to prevent racially prejudicial attitudes, beliefs, behaviours, or practices in our service delivery

Assertive engagement

Assertive engagement takes a proactive approach to delivering support.  It challenges the idea that a client is always responsible for engaging with services and instead requires that the practitioner persistently and consistently approach the client to build a relationship, to engage them in critical conversations around risk, capacity and functioning, and to continue to offer support.

Case management response

Case management practice will be guided by the SFS Case Management Framework (2020). Case management takes a holistic view of an individual’s needs and uses communication and available resources to promote quality outcomes.  Case management is a collaborative way of working with clients and includes assessment, case planning, implementation of the case plan, monitoring and evaluation, transition or exit.

Attachment theory

Attachment theory outlines the importance of the parent-child relationship in determining a child’s future functioning and wellbeing. Attachment influences children’s interactions with other children, their sense of security about exploring the world, their resilience to stress, their ability to regulate emotions, their capacity to have a coherent story that makes sense of their lives, and their ability to create meaningful interpersonal relationships.

Trauma-responsive practice

A strengths-based framework grounded in recognising, understanding, and responding to the impact of trauma, emphasising physical, psychological, and emotional safety, and creating opportunities for clients to rebuild a sense of control and empowerment.

Restorative practice

Restorative practice is a strengths-based practice that seeks to repair relationships that have been damaged.  It empowers families to influence and participate in decision making that will produce positive outcomes for their children.  Restorative practice engages families and enables change by working with families rather than services doing to them, or for them.

Strengths-based approach

An approach to working with people that acknowledges and identifies the strengths and abilities that they come to the helping relationships with, and then works to build on these strengths to address the issues that people face.

Therapeutic team approach

A relationship-based model which brings together the people working with a child or young person as part of a team providing wrap around support.  The approach is assertive in its engagement, intensive in the level of contact with the child or young person, long term, mobile and flexible in the delivery of support.

Safety first approach

A safety first approach is applied where families are experiencing domestic or family violence. Within this approach, women and children’s emotional and physical safety is understood to be a priority and is embedded within all service delivery responses.  There is a focus on understanding risk, increasing immediate and longer-term safety, and working in ways which seek to partner with the protective parent and intervene in ways that place responsibility for the violence and its impact with the perpetrator.  A safety-first response is enacted in partnership with children and their mothers or caregivers, recognising the importance of listening to what safety means for each individual and the family as a whole.

Solution focus

A future-focused, goal orientated approach to working with people that highlights the importance of searching for solutions rather than focusing on problems.

Page last updated : 11 Mar 2022

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