In the best interests of the Kids
Family breakdown and parental separation can be a traumatic time for children. The family dynamics, rituals and traditions can change from one day to the next.
Some children will be able to clearly communicate the impact of the separation and what they feel and think, others will not. Some parents will be able to take those voices into consideration, where others may not.
What is Child Inclusive Practice?
The process of a family separation can be a daunting and intimidating process for children, so Relationship Matters offers Child Inclusive Practice (CIP) within the Family Dispute Resolution service.
It is designed to enhance collaboration between parents and keep the best interests of the children at the forefront of the mediation. CIP also helps separated parents develop co-operative parenting strategies for the future.
Child Inclusive Practice provides an opportunity for children to talk independently with a trained Child Consultant in a safe, supportive and comfortable environment. Children have the opportunity to express themselves and talk about other related concerns with an impartial counsellor. The Child Consultant then provides feedback and recommendations to the parents.
How does Child Inclusive Practice work?
With the consent of both parents, the children have their own appointment with a trained Child Consultant in Relationship Matters’ children’s room.
During the one hour session, the Child Consultant facilitates a conversation with the child and encourages them to talk about the separation, care and contact arrangements and other related topics. Depending on the age of the child, the Child Consultant may use play therapy during the session.
The Child Consultant is not judgemental, suggestive or adversarial in tone. The purpose of the session is to gain insights into how the child is feeling and provide a forum in which they can comfortably express themselves.
The Child Consultant provides verbal feedback and recommendations to both parents in a one hour session. This feedback is then used as a guide and reference throughout the Family Dispute Resolution process.
How much does CIP cost?
Relationship Matters is a not-for-profit community organisation and is partially funded by the Federal Government. Our fees are based on how much each of the parties entering the Mediation process earns per year (gross household income).
The cost will be discussed with you when you call to make an enquiry.
For more information, you can call us on 1300 543 396 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your situation in more detail.
You can also access our online resources that cover in further detail CIP and provide additional resources for supporting children through separation.