Our approach

Working together differently to better support vulnerable children.

The Children’s Action Plan vision for Children’s Teams is for a new approach to working together to support children vulnerable to abuse and neglect.

This way of working is relevant to all those who work with children and families/whānau. Children’s Teams bring together practitioners and professionals from the iwi/Māori, health, education and social services sector to develop a single plan to help and support each vulnerable child.

There are four key foundations to our approach which make up our practice framework. These foundations are based on our principles and values, they are:

The approach recognises that no single agency alone can protect vulnerable children. Children’s needs are multi-faceted. Children’s Teams work together to tackle all the issues a child and their family may have – rather than just address one aspect of the problem. The team approach means that the child gets extra support to ensure he or she gets everything they need.

It is critical to the Children’s Team approach that the child and their family/whānau are supported to the lead the change. They bring their own resources to the solutions and help to identify where practitioners and professionals can use their expertise most effectively to improve the wellbeing of their children and family.

The intended outcomes from the Children’s Team approach are for children to be safe, belong, healthy, achieve and participate.

Our approach operates through a community-based structure at three levels:

  • Governance level – to create joint accountability for the achievement of outcomes for vulnerable children through the prioritisation of existing services, resources, and the development of new mechanisms to support the Children’s Teams approach.
  • Operational level – to co-ordinate practitioners and professionals from health, education, NZ Police, justice and the social service sector to work together and share responsibility.  This oversight will effect quality of decisions made in meeting the needs of each child and ensure accountability for the services delivered.
  • Practice level - to bring together the vulnerable child, their family and those practitioners involved in their care to deliver a co-ordinated, multi-agency response to ensure intensive, timely, safe and effective preventive actions to address the underlying causes of their presenting concerns.