Prevention and Early Intervention: Innovative Practice Model "Down Under" in South-east Queensland, Australia
Research consistently shows that addressing diverse families' needs early in life will reduce risks and increase protective factors surrounding the complexities of families' lives. For decades, prevention and early intervention has been described in many forms, from child centred and client centred to family centred and family focused, yet all have a common goal of intervening early to negate later crisis. This paper notes previous research on early intervention and prevention, and suggests that building partnerships and collaboration are important elements when working with families in complex situations. The next section of this paper provides a snapshot of Australian Government policy direction in relation to early years and outlines an innovative early intervention initiative implemented by the Department of Communities, Queensland State Government. Following this, the focus is on describing a prevention and intervention model, implemented by Lifeline Community Care Queensland Inc., which outlines the critical components of an early intervention initiative for families at risk. An evaluation framework attached to the early intervention and prevention initiative is introduced and the concluding statement points a way forward.
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