Earlier this month, the Commissioner for Children and Young People partnered with CREATE WA to present at the CREATE Voices in Action conference in Sydney.
The presentation showcased the findings of the office’s 2016 consultation with 96 children and young people with experience of out-of-home-care about the systems and supports they need to speak up about their worries or concerns and access help.
The conference presentation was delivered by Senior Policy Officer Alexa Wilkins from the Commissioner’s office, CREATE WA State Coordinator Sarah Lewis, and a CREATE Young Consultant who participated in the consultation and was sponsored by the Commissioner to attend the conference.
Part of the presentation involved young people and professionals/carers in the audience writing down three things that would make it easier for children and young people in care to speak up about their concerns, then sharing and discussing their thoughts.
The Commissioner Colin Pettit said it was both interesting and pleasing that the responses from the conference activity were closely aligned with the findings of the 2016 consultation.
“It is important to share the findings of our consultations broadly, and the discussion further supports the views expressed by children and young people through the consultation and the strategies for which we are now advocating.
“We will continue to use the findings of the consultation to guide our work with the WA Department of Communities to shape stronger feedback and complaints mechanisms for children and young people in out-of-home care to enable them to have a voice and speak up about their concerns.”
The Voices in Action conference was attended by 400 young people, carers, sector workers and academics from around Australia and overseas who were there to learn, have their voices heard and come together to empower young people for positive change.
Sarah Lewis (CREATE WA) and Alexa Wilkins (Commissioner’s office) at the Voices in Action conference with the audience responses on the wall.