Fin WA’s mission is to ‘Promote the enduring rights and benefits to a child to have their parents, family and community involved in respectful and inclusive processes with the child protection system.’
Fin WA aims to achieve this by:
- Empowering parents and families to participate meaningfully in the child protection system
- Fostering a collaborative and inclusive child protection system
- Enhancing the positive role of parents and families within the child protection system
- Developing and sustaining a viable, effective organisation
Fin WA recognises that it may be necessary for some children to be placed in out of home care; however Fin WA recognises that children and young people fundamentally belong with their birth families and as such parents and families are key stakeholders in the lives and futures of their children. Principally parents and families must be involved in respectful decision-making processes that affect them and their children.
Fin WA acknowledges the trauma, grief and loss experienced by a parent when a child is removed or is at risk of being removed to out of home care by child protection authorities. As such we aim to provide empathetic and sensitive assistance to parents and family members to engage in a working relationship with the department with the goal of achieving better outcomes for themselves and their children. Services also aim to assist parents and family members to establish and work toward achievable goals that will bring about personal growth and change. Fin WA works professionally in a non adversarial manner – respecting all parties and seeking resolution via mediation in often highly conflictual circumstances. Services include support, advice, information, advocacy and referral to specialised and suitable service providers.
A key role of Fin WA is to ensure the respectful inclusion of parents in the decision making processes of the child protection system. An important element of the work is to inform families of their rights to fair and just procedures and to encourage and assist in developing respectful relationships between families and statutory authorities.
In our work we make every effort to assist families and child protection authorities to work together to make effective and valuable decisions for the children and the family.
Research shows that parents who do not receive support and information at the time and immediately following statutory intervention of the placement of children into ‘out of home care’ that parents often struggle to remain engaged with the department and other services which maybe helping them manage the issues that have lead to child protection involvement. Such issues often include drug and alcohol addictions, domestic violence, mental health concerns, disabilities, homelessness, isolation and minimal parenting skills.