By Raising Children Network
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Whole of community parenting

Communities are made up of families; all kinds of families. A community that supports parents and cares for children – that looks after families – is a stronger and better functioning community. It benefits both families and our society when raising children is supported at a community level.

There are some great examples of communities thinking differently to help support parents and children. These include new ways of sharing information and partnerships that make children’s services widely available.

What is a child-friendly community?

A child-friendly community is a community that takes responsibility for family and child wellbeing where children are:

  • valued as members of society who need care and support
  • allowed to play a part – by including children in community decisions that affect them
  • encouraged to participate in community activities and to express themselves
  • protected as much as possible from harm, all forms of abuse and neglect
  • helped to reach their potential – with good as a key focus.

Examples of community parenting at work

Community Builders NSW: an electronic clearing house for everyone involved in community level social, economic and environmental renewal including community leaders, community and government workers, volunteers, program managers, academics, policy makers, youth and seniors.

Community Child Care Cooperative: a not-for-profit organisation established in 1978 to promote, support and advocate for quality children’s services, meeting the needs of children, their families and the community.

Research – Taking a whole of community approach and keeping good things going: a project of the Family and Community Enhancement Team (FACET), Australian Institute of Family Studies, Queensland.

See also the Australian Government's Department of Families, Housing, Community Services & Indigenous Affairs Parenting and Children programs and services.

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  • Last Reviewed 15-05-2006