Transitioning Aboriginal children to Aboriginal community controlled organisations (ACCOs)

Strong families, safe children: Directions in Victorian child and family services
Friday 27 July, 1110 – 1130

Presenters

Raylene Harradine
Chief Executive Officer, Bendigo and District Aboriginal Co-Operative

Muriel Bamblett
Chief Executive Officer, Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency

Karen Heap
Chief Executive Officer, Ballarat & District Aboriginal Cooperative

Beth Allen
Assistant Director, Children & Families Policy, Department of Health and Human Services

Abstract
Evidence shows that Aboriginal children and young people in out-of-home care (OOHC) are more likely to have better outcomes, be socially and culturally connected to their communities and have greater access to culturally safe services, when managed by ACCOs.
The Transitioning Aboriginal Children to ACCOs project actualises the desire from the Aboriginal community and the Victorian government’s commitment to self-determination and self-management for all Aboriginal people in Victoria. The project implements Priority 4 and 5 of the Aboriginal Children’s Forum (ACF) to “place all Aboriginal children and young people in out of home care under the authority, care and case management of an ACCO” and “with the commitment across and within departments and the community sector, build the capacity of Aboriginal families, communities, ACCOs and the sector to care for children and young people to reduce the number of Aboriginal children in OOHC”.
The government, ACCOs and CSOs have been working in partnership to develop a robust, transparent and sustainable framework that enables Aboriginal communities to assume increased responsibility for Aboriginal children and young people.
This session will explore the unique partnerships developed amongst ACCOs, CSOs and government, progress, learnings and future directions for the project and OOHC in Victoria.