UnitingCare Burnside launches Newpin Australia

UnitingCare Burnside launches Newpin Australia

Uniting Church agency UnitingCare Burnside has announced the launch of Newpin Australia, a collaboration of service providers and academics delivering a national approach to the prevention of child neglect and abuse.

The announcement was made at the inaugural Newpin Conference on April 7.

The conference, “Creating Intergenerational Change: Because Children Matter”, brought together researchers, policy makers, government and non-government organisations to identify and discuss strategies to support vulnerable families facing multiple disadvantage.

Newpin Australia, under the facilitation of UnitingCare Burnside, is a network of Newpin service providers, supporters and leading academics across the country charged with continuously developing and promoting Newpin as an effective national approach to preventing child neglect and abuse.

Newpin (New Parent Infant Network) is a unique, evidence-based secondary prevention model, first developed in the UK and supported by leading figures in the child protection space including Newpin’s patron Emeritus Professor Dorothy Scott OAM.

Through its intense, therapeutic program, Newpin empowers parents to make long term changes in their families’ lives in the best interests of adult, child and community wellbeing.

The program includes a combination of therapy, parenting courses and parent and child relationship building. Parents are referred through a number of pathways including Community Services and Mental Health providers.

Since its introduction in Australia in 1999, Newpin has worked with over 1,500 children. In Burnside’s Western Sydney Newpin programs, up to 35% of Newpin families have children in care when they commence the program. Through giving parents the skills to keep their children safe, Newpin has acquired a high success rate of achieving restorations for these families.

Research shows after six months involvement with Newpin, 100% of parents have improved their self-esteem and confidence. Many parents who complete the program go on to further education or work while children start school with improved social, emotional and practical skills.

Newpin fills the gap in the current service provision where vulnerable families need a more intensive intervention to make changes which improve their children’s lives.

The specific objectives of Newpin are to:

  • Build positive parent and child relationships
  • Improve social connectedness for families
  • Increase opportunities for children to be kept safe within the family environment and to reach their developmental milestones
  • Improve parenting styles and practices through the provision of intensive support within a structured, therapeutic and educative environment.

UnitingCare Burnside has been operating Newpin in Western Sydney for the past ten years.

The launch of Newpin Australia has created a national network to better link Newpin services around the country, share skills and resources and help promote the Newpin approach to keeping children safe.

About Newpin

Newpin (New Parent Infant Network) is a unique, evidence-based secondary prevention model which supports parents to keep children safe.

The key components of the Newpin program are:

  • An 18-month intensive centre-based parenting program or a one-term intensive group work course that gives parents the insight, skills and support to improve their parenting • Counselling and group work on family relationship issues
  • Structured play sessions where parents and children learn to play together and develop attachment with the support of staff
  • Daily support and guidance by children’s workers for all newborns or toddlers to help them acquire social skills and gross motor skills
  • School preparation support for four year olds
  • Referral to other services, such as accommodation and early childhood education and care that support family well-being
  • Strong links to a range of local services including schools, GPs, Community Health Centres and vocational education providers such as TAFE
  • An empowering, learning environment where extended contact/access visits can take place under the guidance of staff and where parents learn new skills in readiness for their children to be restored home following a period in out of home care.

Newpin is a program of UnitingCare Burnside.

About UnitingCare Burnside

UnitingCare Burnside is one of the largest providers of child and family services in New South Wales. In 2010 UnitingCare Burnside worked with 13,000 children, young people and family members.

Burnside’s services work directly with children and young people and with families in programs for early intervention and child wellbeing, child protection and out-of-home care. We work in disadvantaged communities across rural, regional and metropolitan New South Wales.

UnitingCare Burnside is a member of the UnitingCare Children, Young People and Families Service Group of UnitingCare NSW.ACT.

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