Family group meetings
A family group meeting is where important people in your life meet to discuss what is working well for you and your family and what is not working well. A plan is made to keep you safe and to make sure you and your family receive the help and support you need.
There can be separate meetings if this is safer for you or your family.
Decisions made and agreed upon will be included in your case plan.
Who will be at the meeting?
People attending family group meetings may include:
- you, as it’s important to let people know your thoughts and feelings
- your parents
- other family members or friends close to you
- your Child Safety Officer (CSO)
- other people who are important to you (such as your carer, guidance officer or health worker)
- a person (called a convenor) from Child Safety, who will organise and run the meeting
- people from other services providing support for you.
If you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander young person, your family group meeting may be organised by a person from an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander agency rather than a Child Safety convenor. The people who attend may also include:
- an independent person to help you and your family participate in decision making
- a cultural practice advisor from Child Safety
- an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander placement service, Family Wellbeing service or Family Participation Program service
- other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander agencies that are working with you or your family.
How do I find out about the meeting?
The convenor or your CSO will contact you to talk about:
- why the meeting is being held
- what will be discussed
- ideas on where and when the meeting will be held
- ideas on who can attend the meeting
- if you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander young person, whether you would like an independent person to help you have your say at the meeting.
What if I don’t go to the meeting?
It is important that you have an opportunity to be involved in the meeting and the development of your case plan. If you can’t or don't want to go to the meeting, you can:
- write down what you want to say and someone can then read it out for you at the meeting
- record a video of yourself speaking to be played at the meeting
- share your thoughts and feelings with someone attending the meeting and they can then share your views at the meeting.
After the meeting
Your CSO will give you and anyone else involved who attended the meeting a copy of your case plan. Your CSO will then talk about the case plan with you including what you and other people need to do to achieve your case plan goals. Your case plan will be reviewed within 6 months.
This is the written plan from the meeting that talks about what you need from those who care about you to be safe, happy, healthy and well. This usually includes information about where you live, your schooling, your health, what’s important to you, your goals for transitioning to adulthood and how you spend time with your family. A case plan ensures there is a clear plan about your current and future care arrangements.
If you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander young person, it will also include information on how you remain connected to your culture, identity and your family.
Read more information about what a case plan is and how it affects you.
For more information on family group meetings, you can:
- talk to your CSO
- phone Child Safety on 1800 811 810 or (07) 3224 8045
- contact or visit your nearest Child Safety Service Centre.