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Friday, June 19 • 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Doing and Promoting Family Resilience - Judy Gillespie, Charles Mphande, Maggie Dent

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Abstract #78
10 Building Block Model for Building Resilience in Children
Presenter: Maggie Dent
Today’s world is very different to the world that many parents were raised in. Some of us remember living without television, computers, hand held devices and smart phones. Yet the new advances and increasing knowledge of modern society are not producing more resilient children or young people. Indeed many of our children and adolescents are facing more emotional, social and mental problems and disorders than ever before in a busy, chaotic world. The changing dynamics of parenting and test based schooling have caused more confusion and stress that is negatively impacting children.
 Resilience refers to the ability to successfully manage life, and adapt to change and stressful events in healthy and constructive ways. It is about the capacity to bounce back from positive and negative life experiences. Modern parenting that is more ‘intensive ‘and fear based may be unintentionally creating less resilience in children.
My model of 10 key building blocks for children birth –12 years of age that has been used extensively throughout Australia uses a strength based model of building capacity holistically. When competence and confidence is built incrementally from birth, resilience will improve.

Abstract #144
Multi-Sector Collaboration to Promote Child and Family Resilience: Lessons from an Empirical Study
Presenter: Judy Gillespie
This paper presents a policy framework highlighting the role of statutory child protection systems in multi-sector community collaboration to foster increased resilience for children, youth, and families. With their high contextual knowledge and capacity for boundary spanning communication, cooperation, and coordination, multi-sector community collaborations are viewed as more capable than hierarchical bureaucracies in promoting social change, and facilitating inclusion, opportunities, and access to resources for traditionally marginalized groups. Such collaborations are however, difficult to establish and even more difficult to sustain. They challenge traditional prevention and early intervention approaches to child and family well-being. They require a dedicated infrastructure, ongoing commitment from individual participants, as well as organizational support. Participants and their supporting organizations must be able to define and maintain a common agenda, goals, and objectives across their diverse interests and perspectives. They, as well as any external funders, must also perceive value for their investment of time and resources. 
Drawing from empirical research examining a long-term multi-sector collaboration to address Aboriginal well-being, this paper reviews seven elements necessary to facilitate multi-sector collaboration, and highlights the key role of the child protection authority. The presentation will be of interest to child protection and community practitioners, policymakers, and researchers.

Abstract #232
Doing Resilience: Community Resources and Reciprocity Post-Settlement Among Emerging Horn of Africa in Melbourne, Australia
Presenter: Charles Mphande Co-presenter: Dorothy Bottrell
Studies have shown that emerging African communities in Australia are highly disadvantaged, suffering socio-economic exclusion for a variety of reasons, particularly post-settlement.  Many studies have focused on how formal government and non-governmental agencies and community organisations work to assist with settlement; however, post-settlement challenges are typically beyond the purview of these formal agencies. This paper draws on research findings of a study of informal community networks serving as safety nets among emerging Horn of Africa communities in Melbourne.  The paper discusses how the exchange of community resources through informal networks supports members to manage daily life and adapt socio-economically, despite their disadvantaged circumstances. Framed in terms of Bourdieu’s social capital theory and strengths-based community development theory, the paper focuses on the exchanges and reciprocities of informal networks that constitute resilience practices and are embedded in community values and norms. The paper discusses the strategic and practical ways that members utilise the resources of their informal networks for individual, family and community daily life, coping and adjustment to a culturally and socio-economically different context.


Charles Mphande

Victoria university
Charles Mphande is a Senior Lecturer in the College of Arts and a member of the Mobilities, Transitions and Resilience Network of the Centre for Cultural Diversity and Wellbeing at Victoria University, Melbourne. His empirical research has focused on resilience as individual or group... Read More →

Judy Gillespie

Dr. Gillespie is currently the Acting Director of the School of Social Work at the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus. Prior to obtaining her PhD, she worked for many years in children’s services in northwestern Alberta. Her research interests encompass the role... Read More →

Maggie Dent

Maggie Dent is an Australian author (5 books), educator, and parenting and resilience specialist with a particular interest in the early years and adolescence. She is a passionate advocate for the healthy, common-sense raising of children in order to strengthen families and communities... Read More →


Dorothy Bottrell

Senior Lecturer at Victoria University, Melbourne AustraliaDorothy Bottrell is a Senior Lecturer in the College of Education and a member of the Mobilities, Transitions and Resilience Network of the Centre for Cultural Diversity and Wellbeing at Victoria University, Melbourne. Her... Read More →

Friday June 19, 2015 1:30pm - 3:00pm EDT
ScotiaBank Room NAB 3rd Floor, King's College

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