Even a month later, we’re still reflecting on the many valuable insights and ideas shared during the two inspiring days of the Hand-in-hand: Make it happen… Make it Matter conference. As we continue to share highlights from the conference, we can reflect on the importance of this kind of learning and professional development, and its potential to create a sustained culture of growth and fulfilment for those working in the Community Sector.
We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Professor Daryl Higgins, Professor Brian Stout, Elizabeth and Naseer from Refugee Camp In My Neighbourhood, and Dr Stewart Sutherland for sharing their valuable time, expertise, and insights with us at the Hand-in-hand: Make it happen… Make it Matter conference. Your thought-provoking presentations and contributions created a space for deep and rich conversations and shared learning for the Community Sector workforce and have inspired us to continue our mission to provide the right services at the right time to support the well-being and safety of children, families, and communities. Thank you for being an integral part of this important event.
On Day 1, we were privileged to hear from Professor Daryl Higgins, who outlined what a public health approach is to prevention of child maltreatment, and what systems and strategies are needed to provide children and young people with their right to safety, maintain connections to their family, community and culture. He spoke about various strategies that are needed to achieve this goal, including early intervention and support for parents in response to specific challenges, such as traumatic life events.
We were also honoured to hear from Professor Brian Stout, who focused on youth justice and explored appropriate responses to youth offending. His session built upon Professor Higgins’ presentation by transitioning from child maltreatment to the youth justice system. Additionally, Elizabeth and Naseer from Refugee Camp in my Neighbourhood provided a summarised version of the refugee experience in Australia. Their session highlighted the barriers and risks that refugees face and how this can impact their well-being.
On Day 2, Dr Stewart Sutherland, with a proud Wiradjuri heritage, gave a keynote address that covered the effect of Reconciliation policies and apologies on the social and emotional well-being of those affected by past forced removal policies. He shared strategies that enhance the ability to be culturally safe and emphasised that positive professional relationships are built on effective communication that is respectful, kind, compassionate and honest. In the words of Dr Sutherland, “Understanding history and culture is important for culturally effective communication, Indigenous people may communicate in ways that differ from non-Indigenous Australians and it is important to be aware of this to aid mutual respect and understanding and foster a positive and supportive work environment”.
Stay tuned for more updates from LEAD and future events that we hope you’ll be interested in attending. https://leadpda.org.au/
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