Leaving Care Kits for young people in NSW


Recently Jan was presented with a Transitioning from Care Kit by the National Youth Advisory Council (NYAC) delegates Kimberly and Chris, and CREATE Foundation representative, Bianca Edwards.  This kit will be shown to MPs to gain their support for a Motion that has been placed on the Notice Paper to seek a stronger commitment from the Government to fulfil its obligations to provide young people with Leaving Care Plans. 

CREATE Foundation is the peak body representing the voices of all children and young people in out-of-home care. As an advocate for children and young people in care CREATE ensures that their voices are heard by key decision makers in government and out-of-home care sector stakeholders. CREATE believes that consultation and participation is the cornerstone of good practice and fulfils this commitment through the development and support of NYAC.

NYAC provides a national forum for young people with a care experience to have a voice about issues in the care system, in order to improve the system and the lives of children and young people with a care experience.

CREATE hosts a NYAC summit each year which brings together the NYAC delegates from each state across the country with a focus on developing plans that address key issues impacting on children and young people in care.

One of NYAC and CREATE’s goals is to increase support available to young people and adults who are transitioning from care by developing a Transitioning from Care Kit. These kits include state specific information to enable young people to have access to relevant information and resources.  It has been developed in consultation with young people who have a care experience and who understand the need for the resources.

The kit provided has information specific to Queensland as there has been no funding allocation from the NSW government towards these Transitioning from Care Kits.  In Queensland the Government has provided a budget allocation of approximately $70,000 for the production and distribution of these kits.

In Budget Estimates Committee, the Minister for Family and Community Services, Pru Goward was asked if NSW would be funding the production and distribution of the kits. The response was:

“While Community Services is aware of the QLD Transitioning From Care Kits they are not being considered in NSW”

The Greens are committed to raising awareness about the importance of supporting young people in their transition from care and a petition is available on the website to provide support for improving the delivery of this important resource. To help with this important campaign download the petition here, or call Ella Buckland on 9230 2204.

Notice of Motion “Leaving Care Plans”

On the 22nd November 2011 Jan put a Motion on the Notice Paper in NSW Parliament about the importance of Leaving Care Plans. Jan has called on the government to fulfil its legislated obligation of providing leaving care plans to all young care leavers. Currently the government only provides plans to 18% of young people leaving foster care.

Leaving Care Plans assist young people who have none, or limited support, with information on what services they can access and how they can access them. The plans are intended to empower young people in their journey into adulthood.

For more information on this issue go here:  http://www.janbarham.org.au/?p=87 

To help with the campaign you can download a copy of the petition here.

If you have an inquiry please call the office on 9230 2204, and speak to Ella Buckland or Bronwen Regan.

Fletcher Street Cottage Drop-in Centre

The Fletcher Street Cottage Drop-in Centre is a welcome refuge for Byron’s homeless. The Cottage, on the corner of Fletcher Street and Lawson Street, is a joint venture between the Community Centre, the Salvation Army, St Vincent De Paul and Byron Shire Council and is operated by Darren, Leanne and Katie from the Salvation Army.

The Cottage is open Monday to Friday between 10am and 4pm to provide food and hot drinks, daytime shelter and safe storage for belongings. It offers a caring environment where the needy, lonely and disconnected of our community experience a sense of being valued and supported.

Watch the documentary made about the Fletcher Street Cottage Drop-in Centre here.

Visit the Byron Bay Community Centre here.

Film crew:

Crew –
Lorraine Bell
Grace Larkin
Andrew McGlone
Patrick Spencer
Rani Willis

Byron CSG rally video

Watch the video Sharon Shostak made about the CSG rally in Byron in Oct 2011. Jan was interviewed, along with Ian Cohen. Jeremy Buckingham’s staffer Justin Field spoke at the rally, which is included in the footage. Watch the video HERE.

Some photos were also taken on the day, follow the link to Jan’s Flickr page, or click HERE.


CSG rally in Byron Bay

On Sunday the 16th October Jan went along to the huge CSG rally in Byron. Over 2000 people were there wearing blue and carrying signs. At one point there was a “mexican wave” which involved everyone sitting down on the road. Afterwards there were some great speakers inlucing our own Justin Field (works with Jeremey Buckingham), Arj Barker hosted the event and it was great to listen to all the support in the community for saving our precious water.

Catfish Documentary

Catfish Documentary

Catfish is a 2010 American documentary involving a young man being filmed by his brother and friend as he builds a romantic relationship with a young woman on the social networking website Facebook and then what happens !!!!!!!
As someone who isn’t on Facebook but is interested in how it’s changing the way we communicate and interact and what can happen both positive and negative, this film is fascinating. I was surprised it’s a documentary, it’s so revealing and unexpected.