Permanency
Support Program

SCMSAC is the only Non-Government, Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (ACCHO) providing Permanency Support services in the Shoalhaven and Far South Coast regions. We are a fully accredited agency under the Children’s Guardian NSW Standards for Statutory Out-of-Home Care. We are also accredited under the Australian Quality Improvement Council’s Health and Community Services Standards.

We support Aboriginal Foster Care placements for children and young people aged 0-18 years. We have offices in Nowra, Batemans Bay, Goulburn and Bega. From these offices, we support Foster Care placements in the Shoalhaven, and down to the Victorian border.

Caseworkers, in partnership with our Foster Carer’s, provide support services to children who are unable to live safely with their birth families. We strive to place children and young people in a safe, well-functioning, stable foster home allowing them to develop to the best of their potential.

We work closely with birth parents and family members, and encourage participation in permanency decisions, with the goal of restoration. We also adhere to the Office of the Children’s Guardian strict guidelines.


Family Preservation

Our Family Preservation team is here to support Aboriginal children, young people, and their families, with the goal of keeping families together. We aim to help build safe loving families, keep families together and provide a service that benefits Aboriginal families.

We work with families in their homes to identify issues that are impacting them. We provide long term support for up to two years with the goal of assisting parents to provide a safe environment and raise happy, healthy kids. We assist families with:

  • developing and implementing family action plans
  • access to child care and other services
  • access to cultural activities
  • transport needs
  • a helping hand when needed
  • achieving their goals
  • parenting programs
  • mentoring

“Sharing our intimate knowledge of community enables the best outcomes for kids in care”
Craig Ardler SCMSAC CEO

Family Support

Our Family Support Program provides professional, culturally sensitive services to Aboriginal families. We strive to give our families a safer place to live in our community so they can live a happier and healthier life. Our family support workers use a strength-based family approach to help you and your family build and maintain strong networks.

Our Early Family Support Program

Our Early Family Support Program is focused on supporting families who care for children aged 0 to 5 years old. We support families with new babies, first-time parents, and teenage parents, in their journey to become the best they can be.

We can provide information on early childhood services, antenatal services, and assist in the antenatal period to plan and prepare for the birth of your child.

Who is this program for?

If you feel like being a parent is more than you bargained for, if being a parent is getting you down, if you’re missing the support and practical help of relatives and friends… Perhaps a family support worker could help!


Family Support Workers will:

  • Listen to you
  • Provide you with options
  • Assist you with family and personal matters
  • Work with you to increase your confidence and self-awareness
  • Help you gain a better understanding of health and education

Family Support activities include:

  • Physical activities groups
  • Parenting skills programs
  • Educational workshops
  • Guest speakers
  • Information groups
  • Self-healing groups

Family Support Workers can:

  • Provide relevant information on early childhood services and accessing antenatal services
  • Provide individual family support for families who need assistance in further developing parenting skills
  • Advocate for, and refer families to other services when needed eg: health professionals, child care and housing
  • Work on a one-to-one basis to assist parents and careers to identify their needs, set achievable goals, and work towards their fulfillment
  • Provide groups, workshops, and activities in areas including education, social skills, wellness, health, hygiene, and safety
  • Provide parenting programs to enhance parent’s knowledge, skills, confidence, and self-esteem, both as a parent and as an individual.

THERAPEUTIC SERVICES

We have several therapeutic services available to support children and young people in care as well as their carers. Our trained and professional Community Support Officers (CSO’s) are available to support and provide services for children and young people in care and their family. Our services are culturally appropriate and our team members are sensitive to the needs of Aboriginal children and young people and their families.

PSYCHOLOGIST, SOCIAL WORKER, AND MENTORS

Our Psychologist, Social Worker, and Mentors provide support for our clients, children and young people in a number of ways, including:


  • Biopsychosocial assessments and support.
  • Carer assessment and training.
  • Individual counselling and support relating to mental health disorders and/or symptoms e.g. adjustment, anxiety, grief and loss, depression, trauma, or parenting a child with mental health symptoms.
  • Education support including cognitive and academic achievement assessments, classroom behaviour assessment and recommendations, school readiness assessments, and individual learning support plans.
  • Facilitating Carer training meetings.
  • Critical case reviews and specialist recommendations.
  • Mental health assessments, supports, and referrals.
  • Behaviour assessment and Individual Behaviour Support Plans.
  • Psychological assessment and report.
  • Individual mentoring for children and young people.
  • Individual support for participants with a disability and their carers.
  • Funding and grant application to support internal SCMSAC programs.

 

Our programs include:

Reparative Parenting Program for kinship and foster carers.

Shared Stories and Shared Lives training for kinship and foster carers.

DRUMBEAT Program – This is a 10-week drumming program developed by Holyoake. The program can be provided for people from a variety of groups including adolescents, children, adults, carers, and parents, participants with a disability.

Farming for Calm Program – This program is a 10-week program for primary school-aged children in out of home care. Six children attend a therapeutic farm in Berry for three hours each week with the goal of healing difficulties children may have relating to trauma, social skills, emotion and behaviour regulation, and empathy. The program is a multisensory program where participants engage in farm-based activities, art therapy practices, cultural support, and animal interactions such as grooming horses, cuddling baby chickens, and goats.

School Holiday Programs for children and young people in out of home care.

Leaving Care and Independent Living Program for young people aged 15-18 years and over who are transitioning from OOHC into more independent living arrangements.