How do we measure the success of Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) in parenting matters? Preliminary findings from Relationships Australia’s FDR Outcomes Study

Harnessing workhorses or herding cats? Collaborating across the Relationships Australia Federation to research what matters most to families
Friday 27 July, 1115 – 1135


Jelena Milic
Relationships Australia Queensland

Aditi Lohan
Relationships Australia Queensland

Relationships Australia (RA) has a long history of providing effective Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) services that also safeguard the wellbeing of separating couples and their children. However, there is a paucity of evidence from these positive FDR outcomes that can be used to quantify the benefit of FDR to clients, advance the development of improved practice, and influence future policy and funding decisions.
The present study was initiated by the RA National Research Network with the aim of generating an evidence base by investigating the client outcomes of RA FDR services. This study is longitudinal in design, and asks questions of FDR clients about issues for resolution, adjustment to separation, client wellbeing, child adjustment, co-parenting conflict and child exposure to conflict at three time points: at intake, at three months after intake, and at one year after intake. Over 1,700 participants have been recruited to the study and have completed the Time 1 survey at their intake appointments for FDR.
This presentation reports on the preliminary findings from this study for clients seeking FDR for parenting issues. Outcome data collected from the first two waves of data collection will be discussed, along with the implications of these findings.