NAPCAN Qld manager Sammy Bruderer will deliver a free workshop in Miles to help prevent child abuse.
NAPCAN Qld manager Sammy Bruderer will deliver a free workshop in Miles to help prevent child abuse. Contributed

Free workshops in Miles to help keep children safe

MILES residents will have the chance to learn how to help at-risk children at two free workshops next month.

The National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) will give two workshops on Saturday, October 6, on how community members can prevent abuse.

NAPCAN Queensland manager Sammy Bruderer said the event was part of a statewide education program funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women.

"What we're hoping to do is actually target more regional areas, because we know a lot of metropolitan areas have access,” Ms Bruderer said.

A couple of Miles services originally contacted NAPCAN asking for workshops, and Ms Bruderer said they were happy to oblige.

The first workshop will cover volunteer roles and responsibilities in protecting children, mandatory reporting, and early indicators of child abuse and neglect, while the second will focus on child safety.

"We know that the best way to keep children safe and to help them thrive is to actually prevent abuse before it starts,” Ms Bruderer said.

"So the main focus is actually about how everyone in the community plays their part in keeping kids safe and creating some stronger communities and more inclusive communities for young people as well.”

Ms Bruderer said there were higher risk factors for regional and rural children compared to their metropolitan counterparts.

"We know that because there's not as much support available,” Ms Bruderer said.

"So when families are feeling isolated it actually increases risk for children and young people experiencing abuse.

"But by the same token when communities are really cohesive, we know that's the biggest protective factor, and that's one of the great things about regional areas as well, there's probably more of a sense of community than what you get in some of the metropolitan areas.”

The workshops are open to anyone in the community who works or volunteers with children, including childcare centre workers, teachers, members of churches, sports clubs, and businesses that employ teenagers.

"People who work and volunteer with children play such an important role in our community,” Ms Bruderer said.

"Our job is to make sure that they have the knowledge and skills they need to help keep all children safe.

"People want to intervene with children and young people... but they don't know necessarily how to do that or what support's out there. So what we find is giving people the education and some skills and some strategies around actually supporting families, makes them feel more confident and empowers them to play their part.

"It's really important that we all know what to do to prevent child abuse and what to do if we suspect abuse.”

The workshops will be presented by industry professionals and all participants will receive a certificate to recognise their professional development.

To register for the workshops, visit NAPCAN's website at www.napcan.org.au.


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