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Success of parent coaching service that builds stronger families recognised by NAPCAN award 

The 2018 NAPCAN award National Play Your Part Award by the National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) has been presented to the ReachOut Parents Coaching Program, a partnership between ReachOut Australia and The Benevolent Society. 

When teens reach out

One in four teenagers experience a mental health difficulty and 70% do not access support. When they do, they most often turn to their parents.

The ReachOut Parents Coaching Program provides parents and carers with the information, tools, and resources to support 12-18 year olds in their family environment.

Coaching empowers parents

The program coaches parents to work out their parenting goals and solutions and put a plan together to support their teenage children.

The Benevolent Society’s Leith Sterling, Director of Operations, Child and Family Services, Queensland, highlights the variety of issues families are dealing with.

“Parents and young people today are not only tackling issues they remember from high school, but also brand new challenges like cyber bullying. The coaching program helps parents create strategies and solutions so that together with their kids they can face whatever life throws at them. We firmly believe that this approach strengthens families,” she said.

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Professional, accessible support

Parents often face additional challenges when trying to access professional support. Long waiting lists, absence of local services targeted to teens, cost, or the lack of early morning or evening appointments can make it harder to get help.

The ReachOut Parents Coaching Program is delivered using a mix of online and phone support, which means parents can access services without needing to travel, or engage face-to-face. They can also remain anonymous.

The coaching program is a partnership between ReachOut Australia and The Benevolent Society. Qualified coaches have professional backgrounds in psychology, social work, and health, and parents who have worked with the service have plenty of good things to say.

“The program has gone beyond what I had expected. It gave me hope … It’s much simpler now. I can talk to him and he’s more open, he hears me, he doesn’t block me.”

“I feel we are a bit more capable, like we’ve got it now. We have a lot more tools to address things and a lot more ways to handle things better than before.”

Award recognises positive impact

NAPCAN National Play Your Part awards highlight organisations and individuals who are working to create safer, healthier and happier environments for children. It acknowledges the impact the coaching program has had in only a year of operation.

By offering free, confidential one-on-one parenting help in an accessible way, any parent who is worried about their teenager can access professional help as well as a wealth of useful online information.

“Parenting is by no means an easy feat and this service is an excellent way to support parents in an accessible way,”  - Matt Gardiner, Executive Director Child and Family Services, The Benevolent Society.

“It’s truly wonderful to be recognised for such a worthwhile initiative and we’re delighted to continue the partnership with ReachOut,” he said.

If you would like to know more please call us on 1800 236 762 or visit the Reach Out Parents Coaching website here.

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