Building stronger families and safer children together

GLENORCHY City Council and the National Association for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) partnered together last month to host two special events as part of National Child Protection Week.

The events were held at the Moonah Arts Centre on 9 September with a brightly coloured collage serving as a vibrant backdrop for the activities.

The collage representing Mt Faulkner and other places in the local community was created by families and children at the Chigwell Child and Family Centre (CFC).

Centre leader Chris Mason said families at the CFC wanted to showcase their strong connection to the centre and the importance of family and making the local community safer for children.

“Parents were incredibly proud to highlight the importance of belonging, connection and relationships,” he said.

“Through working on this project together, families of the CFC played a big part in building stronger families and safer children.”

The day commenced with around 50 people attending an introduction to NAPCAN’s Protective Behaviours Program, “All Children Being Safe,” which delivers safety messages to young children through stories, craft, drama and music.

The forum was facilitated by NAPCAN Tasmania’s senior project officer and trainer Trista Cocker and supported by young people from the Glenorchy Youth Task Force.

The afternoon session included the presentation of the Tasmanian Play Your Part Awards in recognition of the work that services and organisations perform in prevention and support for families and children.

Young people, including those from the CREATE Foundation, helped to host the event which was officially opened by Glenorchy Mayor Kristie Johnston.

Mayor Johnston spoke about Glenorchy City Council’s support for the National Child Protection Week’s theme and the value of connected communities in keeping children and young people safe and well.

“It is extremely important to raise awareness and work towards building safer communities for our children,” Mayor Johnston said.

“Council is committed to child and youth focused activities to help increase participation and build the capacity of children, young people and families.”

Special guests during the event also included Josh Willie MLC , Jacquie Petrusma MP and NAPCAN deputy chief executive officer Leesa Waters.

Children and Young People Tasmania commisioner Mark Morrisey presented the state award to the recipient for outstanding prevention initiative, the Child Health and Parenting Service.

Ms Waters spoke about the launch of the “Children’s Voices” project as a way of encouraging local communities to engage young people in conversations and decision-making to build stronger communities.

Glenorchy City Council supports NAPCAN’s Children’s Voices Project and invites all children in the community to take part and describe in words or pictures, “What do you like most about your local community?” and “What would you change about your local community?”

For more information about how you can participate, contact the council’s community development coordinator on phone 6216 6800.

Caption: Alison, three, pictured in front of the Child and Family Centre Chigwell collage.