An important part of ACYP’s mandate, as outlined in the Act, is to give priority to the interests and needs of vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people. Children and young people in out-of-home care (OOHC) are a particularly vulnerable group and often have a range of complex and co-existing needs and challenges, regularly relating to experiences of trauma and distress. This can result in increased physical, mental and social health needs, which are unfortunately often coupled with limited access to resources. As result, there is a need to continue to work to ensure that children and young people in OOHC have access to the holistic supports and wraparound services that they need to thrive.
In 2021, the ACYP team embarked on a consultation project to listen to the voices of children and young people as they shared their experiences of the out-of-home care system in NSW.
For this consultation, ACYP was privileged to speak to 99 children and young people across NSW who are currently in OOHC or have an experience of being in the OOHC system. As with all of ACYP’s work, this consultation was underscored by the principle of participation, which is outlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). The project was aimed at providing an opportunity for children and young people in OOHC across NSW to express their views, outline their experiences and their suggestions around what needs to change.
The video below introduces the Out-of-Home Care Report and, is narrated by children and young people with lived experience in the NSW out-of-home care system.