The Queensland Government has announced a new child and family centre to provide an improved response to children and families needing assistance.
Minister for Children Leanne Linard said the new Southern Downs Child and Family Centre and its location would strengthen the ability to help a wide range of communities.
“The work of the new centre will see cases managed from the Ipswich, Scenic Rim and Southern Downs area down to the New South Wales border,” Linard said.
“This new centre has been designed to cater for projected population growth.”
The centre has been relocated to Ipswich’s Ripley Shopping Centre, which also provides the possibility of co-location for key partners to enhance services available from the new site.
“The new service became fully operational in April 2020 and has been based in temporary locations until its new home here in the convenient and accessible Ripley Shopping Centre was very recently completed,” Linard said.
Linard added the service is currently working with approximately 414 children and their families to provide support and assistance and to meet their protection and care needs.
These families are being supported by 37 staff, who have developed partnerships with local schools, as well as Foster and Kinship Carers.
Ipswich MP Jennifer Howard said the additional 10 full-time positions, which boosted staff numbers, was a welcome change.
“The increased number of staff will boost the centre’s capacity to manage the transferred caseloads from other centres in Toowoomba and Ipswich,” Howard said.
“This is the tenth service centre in the south-west region and underscores the Queensland Government’s commitment to providing support and care for families in regional Queensland.”
Linard said the name of the Child and Family Centre highlighted its targeted approach.
“While this is a move away from the previous Child Safety Service Centre naming convention, it reflects the planned co-location of other child and family support services at the new site,” Linard said.
For more information about the centre, click here.
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