Empowering families

Our Integrated Family Support Service (IFSS) team has helped a client achieve her goals by helping her improve her confidence and enjoyment in parenting, while providing a safe and nurturing environment for her children.

Sarah* was first referred to Baptcare about five years ago when Child Safety Services were concerned about her children not attending school. Sarah lived with depression and found it difficult to find the motivation to carry out day to day activities. She also faced a number of issues including house eviction, hospitalisation due to mental health issues and relationship breakdowns.

Sarah was recently able to achieve many of her goals, a success an IFSS case worker attributes to the “seeds that have been sowed over the years of working with the IFSS team”.

Using a strengths based approach, Sarah’s present IFSS case worker encouraged her to advocate for her own needs, while connecting her to mental health services. Sarah has since gotten her driver’s license, walks her children to school everyday, engages in school activities and takes her youngest daughter to playgroup, an activity she never participated in before. Sarah has also met her Housing TAS contract by cleaning and maintaining the property, turning her low 12.5 score of the Housing TAS Severe Domestic Squalor Assessment Scale to a 5 in less than four weeks. Sarah’s IFSS outcome tool review has also identified that she has gone from a low score to reaching most of her goals.

While Sarah is still a current client, her present worker said they would soon be happy to discuss a closure of IFSS support due the great work that Sarah has done and continues to achieve.

“As this story demonstrates, change occurs when the client is ready to change and the seeds that were sowed by previous workers all supported the client to make that change when ready,” the Baptcare IFSS case worker said.

Through IFSS, Baptcare works in the best interests of children to ensure their safety and development; works with parents to address the needs of their children; actively engages with families through assertive outreach; provides coordination and case management services; facilitates existing community supports and networks; and consults with a co-located community-based Child Protection worker if there are serious concerns about the child’s safety.

In the last financial year Baptcare worked with 968 families across Victoria and Tasmania, including families who accessed IFSS.

* Name changed to protect client’s privacy and confidentiality

Contact: Annemarie Watt

Phone: 0428 063 664