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Purpose of a cultural support plan

The cultural support plan, which forms part of the case plan, is an information and planning tool used to provide guidance and support for every Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child subject to ongoing intervention. It is intended to help them to retain their connection to family, community and cultural supports, regardless of where they are living.

The cultural support plan is an important component of the case planning process for every Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child and is individualised to the child’s needs and circumstances.

For an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child, their parents and family, community, clan, traditions and customs are integral to the development of their sense of identity. Connections to community and culture impact significantly on the child’s health and wellbeing and on their social, emotional, educational and psychological development. They shape who they become as they progress through adolescence and into adulthood.

The child’s cultural support plan is vital to the delivery of culturally appropriate safety services and supports because it:

  • details information about the child’s family, community and personal history
  • helps increase the knowledge and understanding of the child’s place in their family, kinship, and community structure
  • helps nurture and support the child while strengthening their cultural identity and connections
  • assists with the child’s understanding of their community networks and cultural heritage
  • documents arrangements for connection time with family, kin, Elders and community members of significance to the child and each of the parents
  • identifies opportunities for the child to participate in activities and experiences that will preserve their connection with family, community and culture
  • helps ensure that important cultural and family information is accurately recorded and maintained for the child. This is particularly the case for those who are too young to contribute to their own cultural support plan or for those who do not want to identify with their community or culture at this time.

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