FRSA eBulletin, No. 2, 2024


No. 2, 2024 | 8 February 2024

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From FRSA's Executive Director

Having just met with our Departmental colleagues in the Attorney-General’s Department and the Department of Social Services I wanted to acknowledge and thank FRSA members for engaging so proactively with AIFS in the range of survey and advisory groups they conducted at the end of last year.  As you know, AIFS has been contracted by DSS to assist in the review of CfC FP, CaPs and FMHSS and by AGD to support FRSP Review lead, Mr Andrew Metcalfe AO.  Both Departments reported that they were pleased with the response rates received – a message that has also been fed back to us from AIFS.  All your efforts, which I appreciate were significant given the timing, go towards building the evidence base required for both these processes.

That said, these Reviews are still live and there are ongoing ways in which service providers can be and will be called upon to be involved. I have no doubt your level of engagement will remain high.

As an event that highlights the outstanding work in our sector, I am delighted to be able to release today the concurrent session program for the FRSA National Conference 2024 – what a line up!  Once again, the standard of abstracts received was extremely high and we can’t wait to bring them to you as part of the Conference program in Melbourne this year. For those who missed out – thank you for submitting an abstract. It really is a highly contested market so I do encourage you to look forward to the opportunity to get involved in the process in 2025.  Registrations are open and tracking extremely well with the Early Bird rate on offer until Monday, 4 March 2024.

To coincide with the release of the concurrent session part of the program – we will be awarding three (3) delegates free registration.  To be eligible – you must have registered (and paid) by Friday, 8 March 2024.  Winners will be randomly drawn from the list of registrants with the prize provided in the form of a refund.

I also wanted to thank the ‘network grapevine’ for assistance in recruiting a new Communities of Practice Project Officer.  We are very fortunate to be welcoming Lisa Curtis to our team here at FRSA to fill this important role.  Until recently, she has been working in the CfC FP program in Katherine with The Smith Family and we think her practice based experience and background in education and training will definitely shine through!

Kind regards,
Jackie Brady
FRSA Executive Director

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The wait is over! The program for FRSA National Conference 2024 is here! This year’s program focuses on the theme “Family & Relationship Services – Valued now and into the future” and the three day event is set to share and explore our sector’s value and our sector’s potential.

We have 70 half hour sessions and five 90 minute symposiums. Again the standard of abstracts submitted for this year’s conference was extremely high. We have been working hard to ensure the program captures the expectations of FRSA Conference attendees. We have also left plenty of time for networking and we are putting together the final details for our Conference Gala Dinner that will certainly deliver a memorable experience in Melbourne.

Stay tuned for our keynote speaker and panelist announcements in the next few weeks.

Click below to view or download the PDF program. Click on the session titles for more details.


Don’t miss out on early bird registration rates, which end 4 March 2024. As the sector’s ‘go to’ National, annual event – FRSA will not fail to deliver great speakers, great sessions, great networking and a great venue.




Early Bird Registration Fee* Until 4 March 2024

Member Rates Non-Member Rates
Complete Conference Experience – Including dinner $1,095.00 $1,395.00
Conference Only – No dinner $1,020.00 $1,320.00

* To be entitled to the early bird registration fee you must have registered and paid by 15 March 2023.

Pre-Conference Workshops – FRSA MEMBERS ONLY

Member Rates
Dadirri – Ancient Aboriginal Mindfulness Traditions
(Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Workshop)
Family Law Workshop $175.00
LGBTIQA+ Family Practice Workshop
Presented by Drummond Street Services
Using evidence to paint a picture: Finding opportunities for learning, growth and sharing the success of child and family services
Presented by the Australian Institute of Family Studies
Communities for Children Facilitating Partners (CfC FP) Workshop $175.00
Apply for the Bursary Program

FRSA is pleased to offer two bursaries available for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are registered for or would like to attend the 2024 Family & Relationship Services Australia National Conference.

Bursaries are provided to assist with covering the cost of conference registration, and travel & accommodation. Each package includes:

  • 1 x Complimentary full registration to the Conference (including dinner)
  • $500 towards travel and accommodation

To be eligible you must be an employee of a fully financial FRSA member organisation. Applications closes on THURSDAY, 28 March 2024.

Welcome Gold Sponsors: Uniting and UnitingCare

We’re delighted to welcome Uniting and UnitingCare as our Gold Sponsors for this year’s National Conference in Melbourne.

There are still a number of sponsorship package options available, designed to maximise visibility to showcase the work and activity of your organisation/business. Or if you are interested in a more bespoke package for your organisation don’t hesitate to get in touch with the FRSA team on (02) 6162 1811 or

This year’s Conference is expected to attract 550+ delegates, including practitioners, researchers, managers, executives, and policy and program developers from government and non-government agencies.

We welcome your support of the Conference and hope that you will take advantage of the opportunities available to you in joining with FRSA as a Conference 2024 sponsor.

Written Off: The high cost of Australia’s unfair tax system

Everybody’s Home has released a report showing that housing affordability has crashed because the government is subsidising the private market instead of directly building homes.

The report, Written Off, shows:

  • The budget is expected to lose almost a quarter of a trillion dollars (~$228 billion) to negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions between 2010-33
  • The cost of investor tax breaks over the next decade could build more than half a million (549,301) social homes
  • Tax breaks for investors have outstripped federal spending on social housing by at least five times
  • In 1982, the government spent about $164 per person on public and community housing. By 2022, that number shrunk to $61.

Read the full report.

New framework to guide consent messaging for young people

The Government has recently launched the Commonwealth Consent Policy Framework to support any organisation working to prevent sexual violence, to promote healthy sexual relationships and sexual consent to young people.

The Commonwealth Consent Policy Framework: Promoting Healthy Sexual Relationships and Consent Among Young People is designed for governments, education providers, communities, workplaces, sports clubs, media, health and disability providers, caring facilities, religious organisations, public services and the justice system.

The framework proposes:

Commencement of the Family Law Amendment Act 2023 – factsheets available

The Family Law Amendment Act 2023 (Cth) will commence on 6 May 2024.

The Family Law Amendment Act 2023 sets out new laws about:

  • what a court must consider when determining what is in the child’s best interests, and
  • how separated parents are to make decisions about long-term issues for their children.

The Attorney-General’s Department has developed two factsheets that provide an overview of the changes:

The Department may develop further resources to support the commencement of these important changes.

FaC Activity Newsletter – Issue 8

The Department of Social Services has published issue 8 of its Families and Children (FaC) Activity Newsletter. This issue includes information about:

  • Surveys for child, youth and parenting services
  • Early Years Strategy consultation
  • Call for evaluation reports
  • Resource and webinars
  • Stronger ACCOs, Stronger Families project update
  • Data Exchange (DEX) update

Click here to read the latest FaC Activity news.

ACCC Report on early childhood education and care

Last week the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released its final report on early childhood education and care (ECEC).

The ACCC has recommended consideration by Government of potential changes to childcare policies, such as a market stewardship role to oversee and monitor outcomes in childcare markets and respond when they are not achieved, together with the use of supply-side subsidies.

The Childcare inquiry’s final report makes eight recommendations and 31 findings, which are based on detailed analysis of cost and pricing data and extensive engagement with and feedback from childcare providers, educators, parents and guardians.

The report found that affordability of childcare services improved immediately following the Cheaper Child Care reforms that took effect in July 2023. Those reforms reduced out of pocket expenses for all types of care, and for households across the income spectrum. The reduction was proportionately largest for the lowest income decile group, although low income households still spend the largest proportion of their disposable income on childcare.

The report also found, however, that previous affordability benefits from changes to the Child Care Subsidy were quickly eroded by fee increases.

Click here to read the full report

FRSA Pre-Budget Submission

FRSA lodged our 2024-25 Pre-Budget Submission with the Department of Treasury on 25 January 2024.

The submission outlines three priority issues for consideration in the 2024-2025 Federal Budget:

  • Funding for family and relationship services that meets the real costs of service provision.
  • Increased investment in services for children and young people in the family law services sector.
  • Greater investment in Australian children, adults and families experiencing poverty and financial disadvantage.

You can read FRSA’s submission online.

Australian Law Reform Commission inquiry into justice responses to sexual violence

On 23 January 2024, the Australian Government announced it has asked the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) to undertake an inquiry into justice responses to sexual violence.

The inquiry is an essential part of the Government’s $14.7 million 2023-24 Budget commitment to strengthen the way the criminal justice system responds to sexual assault and prevent further harm to victims through the justice process.

The Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus has appointed the Hon Marcia Neave AO and Her Honour Judge Liesl Kudelka of the District Court of South Australia as part-time Commissioners to lead this inquiry.

The ALRC is due to report by 22 January 2025.

Appointment to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia

On 5 February the Attorney-General the Hon Mark Dreyfuss announced the appointment of Mr Anastasis (Tass) Liveris as a Judge of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (FCFCOA) (Division 2).

Mr Liveris has been appointed to the Darwin Registry and commences on 5 February 2024.

Mr Liveris was admitted to practice as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory in 2002 and was admitted to the High Court of Australia in 2007. He was called to the Bar in 2010. Mr Liveris has served as a Councillor of the Law Society of the Northern Territory, including as President from 2015 to 2017. He was also President of the Law Council of Australia in 2022.

Report on Government Services

The Productivity Commission has released its 2024 Report on Government Services (RoGS), which provides information on the equity, effectiveness and efficiency of government services in Australia.

The following parts were released on Monday 22 January 2024:

  • Part A Approach to performance reporting
  • Part F Community services (includes aged care, disability, child protection and youth justice)
  • Part G Housing and homelessness

The following parts were released on Monday 29 January 2024:

  • Part C Justice (includes police, courts and corrective services)
  • Part D Emergency management (includes fire and other emergency events)

On Wednesday 31 January, Part E Health (includes primary and community health, ambulance services, public hospitals, services for mental health), was released.

On Monday 5  February, Part B Child care, education and training (includes early childhood education and care, school education, vocational education and training) was released.

Early Years Strategy feedback closing soon

The Australian Government has developed a draft Early Years Strategy 2024-2034 (Strategy) to shape its vision for the future of Australia’s children and their families and is inviting feedback via an online survey.

The draft strategy was developed following public consultation by the Department of Social Services in 2023. FRSA made a submission to this consultation, which is published on our website.

The Strategy is intended to be an overarching 10-year document. The Strategy will be implemented through Action Plans, as well as an Outcomes Framework to measure its progress and effectiveness. Action Plans will be developed after the Strategy is finalised.

The survey closes 9 February 2024. You can find out more about the Early Years Strategy and complete the survey here.

Good Prospects for Lutheran Care in 2024 – with addition of allied health services

Lutheran Care has acquired Good Prospects Speech Pathology and Psychology practice – strengthening and broadening its existing range of support services for the community.

The acquisition will bring place-based allied health services including assessments, speech therapy, psychological services and preventative programs to Lutheran Care’s 50+ programs and service portfolio with the aim to deliver complimentary services that support positive change for people now and into the future.

“As a client centric organisation delivering strong positive outcomes for our clients, we are thrilled to welcome Good Prospects’ services and their highly skilled team of practitioners to Lutheran Care’s suite of services and programs,” said Lutheran Care CEO, Rohan Feegrade.

“Allied health services are currently in high demand, and adding these complementary services to our remit is a natural extension to Lutheran Care’s core business.” Read more.

Australia Day Honours

FRSA congratulates FRSA Members on receiving Australia Day Honours:

  • CatholicCare NT CEO, Jayne Lloyd received a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to the community through social welfare organisations
  • The Australian Institute of Family Studies CEO, The Honourable Dr Sharman Stone was made a member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to the people and Parliament of Australia, and to the community through executive positions.

And congratulations to Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia CEO, David Pringle on receiving a Public Service Medal (PSM) for outstanding public service to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia through innovative leadership and vision.

Survey: Opportunities to promote nutrition and movement behaviours in early childhood and parenting support services

Researchers at Deakin University are conducting a study to understand how early childhood services could best be supported to promote healthy behaviours in young children.

The study will explore how effective healthy lifestyle interventions in early childhood may be integrated across community, education, and health services to maximise adoption, reach and public health impact in Australia. It will also explore strategies to better reach and support population groups most in need. The findings will provide strategic guidance on the scale up of health behaviour support in early childhood in Australia.

They are asking participants to take part in 15 minute survey that asks about your perspectives on the value of health behaviour support, potential opportunities to provide support and considerations for implementation of healthy lifestyle behaviour support as part of the early childhood services you are managing. Participants can also choose to go into a draw to win a $100 gift voucher. Click here to complete the survey.

Submissions for March issue of Partyline

The March issue of Partyline will highlight stories of innovative, community-led grassroots health care and workforce initiatives that help improve the health and wellbeing of rural, regional and remote communities.

Contributors are invited to reflect on what has worked and how challenges have been overcome in unique settings to provide positive health outcomes for our rural communities.

Submissions are due by COB Tuesday 13 February 2024 to

Survey to Evaluate the NDIS Guides for Understanding Supports

The National Disability Insurance Agency is conducting research with people aged 18 years or over who have looked for disability supports (such as a product, service or program) in the last three months. This will help to better understand the needs of people seeking information. It will also tell them where more information is needed. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete. Click here for more information or to complete the survey.

Indigenous Governance Awards 2024

Applications are now open for the 2024  Indigenous Governance Awards.

Now in their nineteenth year, the awards publicly recognise and celebrate the outstanding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led organisations and projects that, through their effective governance models, make extraordinary contributions to communities and to the nation.

Organisations are highly encouraged to apply, with prizes including corporate mentoring, media and networking opportunities, and a share in $60,000.

There are three award categories celebrating outstanding examples of governance:

  • Category One: Indigenous-led non-incorporated initiatives or projects
  • Category Two: Indigenous-led small to medium incorporated organisations (under $1 million annual revenue)
  • Category Three: Large Indigenous-led incorporated organisations ($1 million and over annual revenue)

Winners in each category receive $20,000 and opportunities for further development and engagement as part of the prize package.

For more info on the Indigenous Governance Awards, or to apply or nominate an organisation, go to the Reconciliation Australia website.

Applications and nominations close 11:59pm AEDT Friday 15 March 2024.

Thu 25

1-2-3 Magic® & Emotion Coaching

July 25 @ 9:00 am - 4:30 pm AEST
Fri 26

If you have any events you’d like listed on the FRSA Events and Training Calendar or job vacancies you’d like listed on the FRSA Jobs Board, email Communications Officer, Vanessa Lam at Please note that posting onto the FRSA website is reserved for FRSA Members only.


Service Manager, Mandurah | AnglicareWA

Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner – Broome | AnglicareWA

Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner – Karratha | AnglicareWA


Family Advisor | Relationships Australia Canberra & Region


Team Leader Family Relationship Centre | Mallee Family Care

Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (FDRP) | Mallee Family Care


Case Manager Housing Support Services | Anglicare NT

Director Partnership Support Services | Anglicare NT

Senior Case Worker | Anglicare NT

Counsellor (Family and Relationships Services) | Relationships Australia Northern Territory

Counsellor / Community Engagement Officer Redress Scheme Support Service | Relationships Australia Northern Territory


Mental Health Clinician – headspace Batemans Bay | Relationships Australia Canberra & Region


Children with disability: natural disasters | Raising Children Network

These resources are for parents of children with additional needs covering natural disaster preparation and what to do in the event of a natural disaster. Preparing for the possibility of a natural disaster is part of life for many Australians – especially at this time of year. This preparation can be especially important for parents whose children have disability, autism or other additional needs and might require extra planning, such as medical, travel or sensory needs.

A new playground: The digital lives of young people with disability | eSafety Commissioner

This report is the third in a series of publications that draw on the Aussie Kids Online dataset – a nationwide survey of over 3,500 young people and their parents or carers, conducted between July and September 2021.

Pre-employment and volunteer screening checks | Australian Institute of Family Studies

This resource sheet provides an overview of screening checks for people who engage with vulnerable groups such as children in employment or volunteer activities in Australia. It answers common questions related to pre-employment screening checks and provides state and territory requirements for working with children, including contact information for state/territory screening services.

Governance for good: A guide for Responsible People | ACNC

There are some important things your charity can do to ensure it is being governed effectively. This guide is designed to help your charity’s Responsible People understand good governance, their responsibilities and duties, and the obligations your charity has to the ACNC.

Digital mental health resources for First Nations people | Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

This paper explores the evidence for digital mental health tools, specifically web-based tools or mobile phone apps, for First Nations people. It highlights benefits of these resources, examples of best practice in their development, alongside barriers and challenges to their use.

Housing Challenges for Single Person Households | Community Housing Industry Association Victoria

The project, Housing Singles Successfully, focussed on three areas: (1) a study of VHR data to give insights into current and future demand for singles housing, (2) the challenges that these households experience in sustaining tenancies and existing initiatives that address them, and (3) a study of Unison’s tenancy management data to analyse the specific costs of providing singles housing relative to other groups.

The findings show that the crisis of housing singles stems from inadequate income support, constraints this imposes on project viability when building new singles housing, and the lack of appropriately funded and targeted tenancy supports to help singles maintain their housing

Mental health and wellbeing interventions for care-experienced children and young people: Systematic review and synthesis of process evaluations | Children and Youth Services Review

This paper reports the process evaluation synthesis, exploring how system factors facilitate and inhibit implementation and acceptability of mental health and wellbeing interventions for care-experienced children and young people.

Incredible Women: Legal Systems Abuse, Coercive Control, and the Credibility of Victim-Survivors | Sage Journals

This article draws on the experiences of 54 women victim-survivors of coercive control in Australia who had experienced legal systems abuse within criminal and civil protection order systems. Drawing on feminist legal theory, we highlight that the legal system continues to disbelieve women and validate abusers. These experiences hold implications for victim-survivor views on the merits and risks of criminalizing coercive control.

Reflect, respect, respond: protocols for culturally respectful engagement with First Nations communities | Be You

This guide provides practical information for educators and reflections about:

  • connecting with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
  • developing family partnerships
  • including culturally responsive curriculum
  • discussing culturally sensitive topics in an early learning service or school
  • writing policies for inclusive learning communities.

The guide also provides case studies, reflective questions and suggested actions to support educators in creating welcoming, culturally responsive learning communities.

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