Finding the right service for a child and young person in need of support can be difficult.
Navigating the health and human services sector can feel like a mammoth feat. Organisations have different referral and intake processes, and with that comes varied (and at time lengthy) waitlists, paperwork to sign and people to talk to. For a people already experiencing challenges or adversity, these processes can place even more burden on their already busy schedules, and at times be a barrier to accessing support.
It is critical that people are met with compassion and empathy when referring themselves or their child to a service. At Australian Childhood Trauma Group, we recognise that many people accessing our service have experienced trauma and adversity; at times, the system itself has been traumatising.
Our intake calls are an opportunity for families to feel seen and understood, and that with that, feel that there is hope and scope for change moving forward.
First, referrers complete a referral through our website. Next, our Clinical Intake Co-ordinator will touch base within 2-3 business days to complete an intake call. An intake call is not merely gathering and aggregating data; it is instead a protected time in which referrers – in particular parents and carers – can discuss their needs, wishes and concerns.
After this call is complete the client/participants intake is processed. An allocations meeting is then held to discuss information contained in the intake form. We ask questions such: what are the presenting challenges? How might trauma and adversity be impacting this young person or families social, emotional and physical wellbeing? What are their strengths and areas of interests? In light of these discussion a program of support is then developed and proposed to the family.
We hold our organisational values at the forefront of referral and intake process: a child-centred, trauma-informed and systems approach to understanding a child, young person and families presentation, needs and potentials goals moving forward. We aim to be transparent in our approach and realistic in what we can deliver to all our referrers.
Most importantly, safety is at the core of our work; creating safe relationships and demonstrating to children and families through our own behaviours that we are here to collaborate, centre the voice and choice, and listen.
Australian Childhood Trauma Group