3C Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander/CALD


Andrew Rush,
drummond street services
Thursday November 22 2018

Time: 10:50am – 11:20am

Room: Bluewater 1

3C Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander/CALD

Improving relationships with children for Aboriginal men who have used violence



drummond street services delivers a range of prevention, early intervention and targeted, specialist support for children, young people, adults and families across the family life-course, and at key family transitions This paper presents drummond street services’ collaboration with Dardi Munwurro to deliver a program aiming to improve Aboriginal men’s relationships with children as fathers, uncles, pops, brothers, cousins and community members.

Dardi Munwurro (Strong Spirit) was established in 2000 to provide leadership training and personalised coaching designed to assist Aboriginal men in identifying their emotions and personal strengths. They offer a range of healing, behaviour change and family violence programs and services to break the cycle of intergenerational trauma in Aboriginal families and communities, by empowering and inspiring individuals to heal the past, acknowledge the present and create a positive vision for the future.

drummond street acknowledges the injustices and trauma Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have suffered as a result of European settlement, the Stolen Generation and other policies, such as the forced removal of children from their families, communities, culture and land. Drummond street recognises the fundamental importance of cultural traditions, beliefs and connection to country and land for the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal people, families and their communities.

Dardi Munwurro run Ngarra Jarranounith Place, a residential healing and behaviour change program for Aboriginal men who use or have been convicted of family violence. Participants are required to live independently in one of the Program’s residential properties located in the northern suburbs of Melbourne, for up to 16 weeks. Whilst there, they work with a case manager to address their physical and mental health, social & emotional wellbeing, and legal and financial needs, to heal the past, acknowledge present to make positive changes, and create a positive vision for their future and for a safer community.

Participants in the seminar will hear about the structures and processes involved in drummond streets contribution to Ngarra Jarranounith Place, a program that aims to improve Aboriginal men’s relationships with children. Outcomes the program is seeking are: men understanding their role with children and the type of father they want to be; improved capability with child-centered relationships with children; improved respectful relationships with children, mothers and women. The program includes a range of information, activity and reflection that recognises that Aboriginal culture, community connection, and self-determination are critical protective factors for wellbeing.

Please note no slides were used for this presentation


Andrew Rush has graduate and post graduate qualifications, including Gestalt Therapy and a MA (Research) Philosophy. He has worked within the social welfare field for more than 25 years in a variety of roles and programs, covering roles in child and family services, family violence, youth services, and work with Aboriginal Communities and African refugee Communities. With extensive experience in the delivery of innovative, evidence based child, youth and family services responding to child vulnerability and maltreatment, he has a specialist focus on fathers. During the past 4 years he has focused on strategic and operational management and program development, within a family service agency in inner Melbourne.