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Keeping Children Safe parent education programme: improving access to parent education in the context of child protection

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 June 2020

John N. Burns*
Affiliation:
Master of Social Work, Mullion Creek, NSW, Australia
Suzanne M. Brown
Affiliation:
Advanced Diploma in Community Welfare, Orange Family Support Service, Orange, NSW, Australia Attorney-General’s Department, Barton, ACT, Australia
*
Author for correspondence: John N. Burns, Email: j_burnsfamily@bigpond.com

Abstract

This article reports on an evaluation of the Keeping Children Safe parent education programme run in Central West New South Wales. The programme, conducted since 2004, and continuing today, primarily targets parents of children at risk and other vulnerable and disadvantaged families. The evaluation covers a 13-year period, from the first group held in May 2004 to February 2017. From the beginning, the authors strategically endeavoured to recruit and retain parents from the target group. Findings from the literature indicate that this group is difficult to engage and retain in parent education groups. Parents targeted for the groups in this study were generally not receiving parent education elsewhere. Using mixed methods, the facilitators have continuously evaluated the programme in terms of attendance rates, process and impact. The results of these evaluations show successful recruitment and retention of participants from the target group over the 13 years of the evaluation reporting period and indicate that the programme’s immediate impact on participants has been favourable. The findings complement other programme evaluations focusing on recruitment and retention to programmes in the child protection context and on hard-to-reach clients. The authors also argue the importance of education for parents about child abuse and neglect.

Type
Articles
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press

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