Child abuse and neglect is preventable. If we all work together as a community we can create an Australia where all children can grow up safe and well. What role can you play in supporting children and their families? ~ Richard Cooke, CEO, NAPCAN
National Child Protection Week invites all Australians to play their part to promote the safety and wellbeing of children and young people.
This year, National Child Protection Week (NCPW) occurs across Australia from 4-10 September. In 2022, National Child Protection Week will continue to embrace the overarching message:
Every child, in every community, needs a fair go.
To treat all of Australia’s children fairly, we need to make sure every family and community has what kids need to thrive and be healthy.
We can all play a part by creating stronger, happier neighbourhoods. This can be achieved by talking to your neighbours, checking in with friends, being a good role model, supporting and being kind to parents rather than judging or being competitive, offering to assist where possible and speaking up if you see something that is unsafe.
It is important that we listen to, and value, what children have to say. Where possible, include their voices in decision making and be advocates for their best interest.
By speaking regularly to children about their personal safety and how they can protect themselves, as well as “tuning into” their worries, children are more likely to trust us and feel comfortable to talk to us when something big is going on.
Make your influence positive; start a conversation today with your colleagues and families about listening to and valuing the voice of children and young people.
In recognition of National Child Protection Week 2022, we asked Diocesan Catholic schools and St Nicholas Early Education and OOSH services to decorate their school or service gate, fence, or alternative space in line with the theme, ‘Every child, in every community, needs a fair go’.
We extend our sincere thanks to the 31 primary schools, 3 secondary schools, 5 early education centres, and 3 out-of-school-hours care services that participated in ‘Decorate Your Gate’. Each display was unique and reflective of the community responsible for creating it, and the quality of displays was extremely high across the board.
And the winners are…
Primary School – St John the Baptist’s Primary School, Maitland
Secondary School – St Bede’s Catholic College, Chisholm
St Nicholas – TBA
Each winning school will receive a 10sqm locally-themed mural at their school painted by acclaimed artist Mitch Revs, designed in collaboration with students.
The Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle has an abiding commitment to promote the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children. The Office of Safeguarding is the structural expression of the Diocese’s commitment to demonstrate the highest standards of recognising and upholding the dignity and rights of all children.
The Office of Safeguarding provides training to diocesan personnel to ensure they adopt safe work practices when working with children, and to increase their awareness of the indicators of abuse to equip them to provide the correct response. The Office of Safeguarding also provides an intake service to assist diocesan personnel in ensuring they meet both their mandatory reporting obligations to statutory authorities as well as their duty of care obligations. Risk assessments and comprehensive compliance audits are also undertaken to ensure the diocese is compliant with various safeguarding regulatory and contractual obligations and to reduce and manage identified risks.