The Child Advocates role is to reduce the impact of domestic/ family violence that it has had on the children through building positive relationship with the Child and advocating to protect their rights and interests.
The Child Advocate works from a purposely designed early childhood space that is nurturing, stimulating and safe. The children will be offered; Signs of safety (safety planning), art based group therapy work, domestic violence education, within a safe non-judgemental environment where the children can talk, be heard, improve their self-esteem and identify their feelings.
The Child Advocate uses strengths based platform to educate the children with appropriate skills to increase their safety in difficult or abusive situations. Continuous games and activities are innovatively used to increase the child’s capacity to develop their own protective behaviours. The Child Advocate will; Advocate for the Children to gain placement into schools, deliver the Children’s Program within the Pat Thomas House Refuge, and provide child-focused case management which may include referrals to children’s counselling, community health services and other organisations within the community.
All mothers will be supported by information provision, referral and assistance to access childcare centres and family day care schemes.
Childcare options will be given to the clients when they are accommodated if these are not already in place.
Children and young people react to DV in many different ways. Some key things to look out for are:
- Mood swings
- Headaches, stomach pains
- Low self-esteems
- Sadness/ Withdrawal
- Developmental delays
- Disturbed sleep/ nightmares
- Behavioural changes
For Child Advocate services contact 08 9535 4775 and select Option 6.