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Tools for practitioners

Tools associated with our Strengthening families Protecting children Framework for practice aim to increase the engagement and planning skills of practitioners when working with family members. These tools include:

  • Solution-focused inquiry (SFI), which is a questioning approach/interviewing practice based on a simple idea with profound ramifications—that the areas people pay attention to grow. SFI provides strategies for workers to efficiently and effectively facilitate a change process by using questions to develop a vision for change. (SFI assumes the family is competent to change should they decide to do so.)
  • The Safety House Tool —a process for engaging young people in safety planning and helping share young people’s safety worries around visiting family members’ homes.
  • The Future House Tool —a process assisting parents and carers to identify their vision and goals for the young person’s future safety, belonging and wellbeing. This tool is useful when working with young people and family members to help plan the young person’s transition to adulthood
  • Circles of Safety and Support Tool—a process to help young people identify people in their safety and support network. This assists in relational permanency (consistent, predictable and loving relationships) for young people in care as it identifies relationships that need nurturing to facilitate ongoing connection with family. 
  • Safety planning—can be used when working with young people who may be experiencing safety concerns (for example, self-harm or relationship issues) as the process creates a safety and support network of people centred on the young person’s life. This includes important family members.
  • The Safe Contact Tool—The safe contact tool has been designed to engage all of the significant people in the young person’s life, including the young person, in decision making and planning. This is to ensure that contact between the young person and their family is safe, and is regular and frequent enough that it enables the young person to maintain their connections with their family, community and culture.

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