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Thriving Queensland Kids and partners team up for Commission funded workforce project

20 Mar 2024

We’re excited to announce the launch of the ‘Enabling Workforces and Organisations for Thriving Kids’– a new collaborative project aiming to uncover and embed learnings on the impacts of adversity and trauma to better equip organisations to respond to and support children, young people and families in Queensland.

The Queensland Mental Health Commission (the Commission) is investing $425 000 in the project which will be jointly led by the following Queensland-based and national organisations:

  • Thriving Queensland Kids Partnership (TQKP)
  • Emerging Minds
  • Yiliyapinya Indigenous Corporation
  • The Queensland Brain Institute at The University of Queensland
  • Dovetail, as part of Insight, Centre for Alcohol and other Drugs Training and Workforce Development, Queensland  

About the Enabling Workforces and Organisations for Thriving Kids project

The project will examine the inter-related and challenging trends that are facing workforces and organisations across multiple government agencies and other relevant systems and workplaces.

This includes looking at the complexity and impacts of child maltreatment, trauma and mental ill-health; the demands on services to meet the need; and other staffing and exposure to psychosocial hazards challenges.

The project aims to broaden and share learnings across organisations, about the factors influencing health and wellbeing from early childhood and across the life course, including adversity, trauma, complexity and diversity, and protective measures for brain and body health and development, mental wellbeing, healing and resilience for children, young people and their families.

This work is supported by and will help contribute to recommendations around prevention and building workforce capacity, outlined in several recent Queensland Government strategies, such as Achieving balance, Shifting minds, Every life and Putting Queensland Kids First.

In addition, this work will be a valuable foundation piece to underpin the forthcoming work with the Trauma Strategy led by the Queensland Mental Health Commission, and the Health and Wellbeing Strategy led by Health and Wellbeing Queensland in partnership with the Queensland Mental Health Commission.

Quotes from the Commission and project partners

Ivan Frkovic, Queensland Mental Health Commissioner said, “Overwhelmingly, the evidence tells us, that supporting children and families as soon as we can at the early ages, leads to better outcomes. This important project and the findings and resources it will uncover will help equip Queensland government organisations and their workforces to better support families and children to prevent and reduce the impacts of adversity and trauma on children and young people, which can change the trajectory of lives into adulthood.”

Michael Hogan, Convenor of TQKP said “We know that what surrounds us shapes us, which is why TQKP is working to ensure that all the sectors and systems that shape the lives of children and young people in Queensland are well supported, integrated and informed by the evidence of what works to improve the odds of children, young people and their families thriving.”

Brad Morgan, Director at Emerging Minds explained, “Every interaction between a family and a service provider has the potential to positively impact children’s mental health, wellbeing and development. It takes the collective effort of supportive leaders, organisations, policies, and professionals, working in partnership with families and communities, to make this a reality. We are thrilled to be a partner in supporting the Queensland workforce to maximise the potential of every interaction.”

We know that brains are built, not born, and that strong, informed workforces working with families according to their needs are one of the best ways to support healthy brain development from the earliest stages of life.

Karen Petty, Manager at Dovetail said, “We know the importance of collaboration in building workforces that improve the health, wellbeing, healing and resilience for children, young people and their families.”

Next steps

The project is being co-designed, developed and delivered though collaboration with Queensland Government agencies and authorities across the education, health and mental health, family well-being, child protection, disability, justice, community, housing, and youth justice, and skills and training portfolios. Expertise is also being sought from those with a lived experience.

The two-phase project is due to commence shortly. The first phase will run from March 2024 to July 2024 with a focus on government sector workforces and agencies. This phase will include engagement, mapping of existing resources, and co-designing a workforce package with government agencies.

The second phase from July 2024 to January 2025 will involve using shared knowledge to develop an e-learning hub, piloting curricula and modules, and refining and embedding key learnings.

Media enquires or want to find out more?

Communications and Engagement team, Queensland Mental Health Commission

P. 07 3244 9240 E.

Michelle Cole, Thriving Queensland Kids Partnership

P. 0401 090 396 E.

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