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Thriving Children Thriving Communities

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    Join our lunchtime webinar series as we bring together diverse early childhood perspectives, share evidence and resources, and explore equity and innovation in community child health.

    All children deserve the environments, experiences and opportunities they need to thrive.

    We know that a fair and healthy start in life supports lifelong health and opportunity for children, and allows families, communities, society and the economy to prosper. In a time that presents unprecedented challenges, emerging from this pandemic with a greater focus on fairness, the early years, and innovation is critical for tackling inequity and optimising wellbeing.

    Thriving Children, Thriving Communities 2023

    The Thriving Children, Thriving Communities series unites clinicians, researchers, practitioners, community members and policymakers to explore issues of significance to community child health.

    A vision for a better system: the role of Child and Family Hubs 

    Panellists: Andrew Resetti, Anne Hollonds, Emma Sydenham, Jo Goulding, and Dr Suzy Honisett. Host: Prof Sharon Goldfeld.

    Coinciding with the launch of the National Child and Family Hub Network, this webinar explored the pivotal role of Child and Family Hubs (Hubs) in connecting families to the services and social supports they need to thrive. Discover the diverse Hub settings of Australia, good practices in Hubs and the benefits of boosting Hub investments, particularly for families experiencing adversity.

    Related resources

    Combatting child poverty in Australia: What are the challenges and how can we overcome them?

    Panellists: Dr Ana Gamarra Rondinel, Prof Sharon Goldfeld, Libby Buckingham and Melissa Stone. Moderator: Dr Anna Price.

    During Anti-Poverty Week, the Centre for Community Child Health and the Victorian Council of Social Services partnered on a webinar to explore prevention and early intervention solutions to reduce the impacts of financial hardship and poverty on children and families. 

    Related resources

    Ensuring healthcare in out-of-home care: Identifying and responding to the health needs of children and young people

    Panellists: Vicki Horrigan, Dr Niroshini Kennedy, Susie Kieliszek, Dr Karen McLean, Dr Trupti Prasad, Deb Tsorbaris. 

    During National Child Protection week our September Thriving Children, Thriving Communities webinar focused on the health and wellbeing of young people living in out-of-home care. The panel brings expertise in research, clinical care and service provision to examine the challenges and needs of children in out-of-home care and what is being done – and should be done – to ensure they thrive.

    Related resources

    Talking the talk: Framing the way we use language to advance preventative policy and practice 

    Panellists: Dr Nat Kendall-Taylor and Prof Frank Oberklaid

    Date: Monday 5 June 2023

    Prof Frank Oberklaid and Frameworks Institute CEO Dr Nat Kendall-Taylor discussed the need for a focus on prevention and how the science of framing can be used in communications to build support for preventative solutions.

    Related resources

    Towards equitable early years services and systems: Restacking the Odds

    Panellists: Susan Anderson, Olivia Hilton, Prof Sharon Goldfeld, Michelle Lucas and John Bush.

      This webinar provides an overview of Restacking the Odds, the evidence behind the approach, and explores how lead indicators are enabling services to better meet the needs of children and families—particularly those experiencing disadvantage.

      Related resources

      Creating communities of practice

      Panellists: Annette Fuller, Cathryn Thoday, Claire Jennings, Lauren Heery, Dr Paul Prichard and Dr Rebecca Goodhue. 

      Date: Thursday 27 April 2023

      This webinar explored what a community of practice is and how it can be used to build connections and improve practice. View the recording to hear from community of practice participants about challenges and opportunities.

      Related resources

      Empowering parents, empowering practitioners: responding effectively to the mental health needs of children and families

      Panellists: Dr Daniel Peyton, Professor Harriet Hiscock, Dr Jenny Maxwell and Derek McCormack.

      Date: Tuesday 11 October 2022 

      Positive mental health supports children’s learning, development and social relationships. This webinar explored resources and strategies developed to help young people and families access the support they need including COMPASS (COnnecting Mental-health PAediatric Specialists and community Services), the Raising Healthy Minds App and the FindWays website.

      Related resources
      The Royal Children's Hospital
      • Anxiety resource: Helps parents understand the signs and symptoms of anxiety in children, and when to seek professional help.
      Community of practice pilot
      • Project: The Child mental health community practice (pilot) aims to upskill local GP's, paediatricians, psychologists and social workers in child and adolescent mental health.

      Can we eliminate the impacts of congenital CMV?

      Panellists: Dr Valerie Sung, Dr Hayley Smithers-Sheedy, Emma Webb and Kate Daly.

      Date: Tuesday 30 August 2022

      Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a common virus that rarely causes problems in healthy people. However, if women develop CMV infection during their pregnancy, they can pass the virus onto their baby – this is congenital cytomegalovirus. While uncommon, congenital CMV can cause developmental difficulties and accounts for around 15-20% of childhood hearing loss that affects both ears. This webinar explores congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV): what it is, how it affects children's healthy development, and the efforts dedicated to identifying and reducing congenital CMV.

      Panellist slides

      Related resources

      CMV Australia
      • Posters: 'Raise your hand to stop CMV' poster and 'Protect your baby from CMV' poster.
      • Short video: The 'What is CMV?' video provides simple strategies to help prevent CMV.
      Cerebral Palsy Research Alliance
      • Free eLearning course for midwives and midwifery students: This free training provides information on how congenital CMV can affects babies as well as recommended prevention strategies.
      • Short video: Provides an overview of congenital CMV, including how common it is, how it is contracted in pregnancy, and how to reduce the risk of transmission.
      • CMV resources: Download or order a variety of free pamphlets and posters in English and community languages. 
      • cCMV Network Bulletin: Stay-up-to-date with CMV awareness, education and research news.
      Childhood Hearing Australasian Medical Professionals network
      • Resource series: Helps parents navigate the medical tests recommended for babies with newly diagnosed congenital hearing loss.

      Community listening: What happens when we start with children and families?

      Panellists: Dr Tim Moore, Catherine Thompson, Kerry Laming, Tara Day-Williams and Vikki Leone (Host). 

      Ensuring that every child in every community has what they need to thrive has proved elusive in Australia. Despite our efforts, many children, families and communities remain overburdened and under-resourced. Traditional ways of working are failing to address inequity, disadvantage and vulnerability. This webinar explored the role of community listening in effecting change for children and families, and showcased the collaborative work of Hands Up Mallee, and the Stronger Places Stronger People initiative.

      Related resources

        Past webinars: recordings and resources

        Q&A: Shifting the focus

        Panellists: Anne Hollonds, Pasi Sahlberg, Kavita Bali and Sharon Goldfeld (Host). 

        We welcomed back recent panel members to further explore the themes and questions posed by participants at webinar, Shifting the focus: the pandemic and children – two years on.  This online Q&A explored the issues and potential actions for building back differently to ensure every child thrives. Panel members discussed the role of schools and partnering with families in enhancing children's wellbeing and the importance of ensuring children's voices are both heard and actioned.

          Shifting the focus: the pandemic and children - two years on

          Panellists: Anne Hollonds, Pasi Sahlberg, Leanne Rodriquez and Sharon Goldfeld (Host). 


          Over the two years of the pandemic  we have seen school and workplace closures, social distancing and changes to everyday life disrupt the lives of children and families. However, the disruptions associated with the public health responses have also included free childcare, income support and accommodation for those experiencing homelessness. This webinar bought together expertise in research, policy, education, and practice to reflect on the emerging effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on children and families, and share promising or innovative ideas for strategies to reduce inequity and optimise opportunities.   

          Related resources

            Children’s mental health: How primary schools are supporting positive mental health

            Panellists: Professor Frank Oberklaid, Dr Jon Quach, Dr Georgia Dawson and Gita Peterson.

            Schools are an ideal platform to address children’s mental health issues. This webinar described a new model of school mental health support – the Mental Health in Primary Schools (MHiPS) project – which places a trained Mental Health and Wellbeing Coordinator as an additional resource in primary schools.


            Related resources

              Integrating care to improve child mental health in families experiencing adversity

              Panellists: Dr Suzy Honisett, Jayne Nelson, Prof Frank Oberklaid, Prof Sharon Goldfeld (Host). 

              Childhood adversities are stressful and potentially traumatic events during childhood. In the absence of support, they can have lasting negative effects on health and wellbeing and can contribute to mental health problems. This webinar explored how Child and Family Hubs are integrating health and social care to improve mental health in families experiencing adversity. It covers the co-design, implementation, and evaluation of Hubs from a research, practice and policy perspective.

              Related resources

                Parents as partners and co-workers: A case study in peer-led parenting programs

                Panellists: Dr Tim Moore, Dr Paul Prichard, Kitrina Edwards.

                This webinar explored the importance of partnering with parents to optimise children’s wellbeing, using Empowering Parents, Empowering Communities (EPEC) as a case study. EPEC is a community-based program training local parents to run parenting groups (developed in the UK and led in Australia by CCCH).

                Related resources

                  Learning and changing: Using quality improvement to create more equitable services

                  Panellists: Lauren Heery, Rachel Mullin, Leah Taylor. Hosted by Professor Sharon Goldfeld.

                  Quality improvement offers a practical, step-wise approach to understanding problems and designing and testing possible responses. It can empower those who work with children and families to solve the issues they face. This webinar explored how quality improvement is being used to build understanding of communities, share learnings and create partnerships for change.

                  Related resources

                  • Best Start
                    The Best Start program is a Victorian Department of Education and Training place-based prevention and early intervention initiative focused on strengthening early childhood services for Victorian children and families. Since 2016 CCCH has provided training and coaching to Best Start facilitators to help adopt a quality improvement approach. 
                    1. Best Start Guide to improvement
                    2. Best Start and CCCH quality improvement initiative 

                  Pushing the boundaries: Using telehealth to improve access and care

                  Panellists: Dr Billy Garvey, Professor Sharon Goldfeld, Professor Harriet Hiscock, Karen Inkster and Melanie Wade.

                  This webinar was the first of the series. It explores research, clinical, community and parenting perspectives on an innovative model of care that embeds paediatric specialists in primary care, and uses telehealth to improve access to care for children in remote and regional areas.

                  Related resources

                  Platforms: Supporting community led change

                  Panellists: Kushi Ashraf, Bec Fry, Joanna Harper and Paul Prichard.

                  This webinar provides an overview of the Platforms approach to place-based change developed by the Centre for Community Child Health. It offers insights from the perspective of a community member and service provider involved in Platforms projects in Victoria and Western Australia.

                  Related resources

                  The Centre for Community Child Health has published a range of resources to help communities plan, implement and evaluate place-based change:


                Murdoch Childrens Research Institute

                The Centre for Community Child Health is a department of The Royal Children’s Hospital and a research group of Murdoch Childrens Research Institute.