Archive: Nov 2016

Training requests for NAPCAN’s respectful relationships programs in Victoria at an all time high

Pictured: New Love Bites facilitators at the Coburg training with Anj Barker, respectful relationships advocate.

The Victorian Government recently announced $21.8 million in funding over two years to roll out respectful relationships education to every Victorian student from kindergarten to year 12.

The Respectful Relationships Education in Schools (RREiS) project was piloted in 19 Victorian high schools last year, highlighting that building gender equity into the cultural makeup of a school means looking beyond the curriculum and taking a whole of school approach.

As part of a staged process, all Victorian schools will be supported to implement the whole of school approach, which will involve looking at practices and policies relating to gender and driving meaningful cultural change.

NAPCAN began delivering Love Bites respectful relationship program training in Melbourne in 2014 and our presence in Victoria has been expanding rapidly over the past year, with requests for the Love Bites respectful relationships program at an all time high.

Two Love Bites trainings were completed in Melton and Coburg last month, which now totals six trainings completed in Melbourne the past 12 months, resulting in 79 new facilitators.

At the recent Love Bites training in Coburg, special guest Angela Barker met with the new facilitators. Angela is a passionate and inspirational young woman who after surviving a horrific domestic violence incident, advocates for respectful relationships and campaigns and educates the public on anti-violence. Anj’s story is featured as part of the Love Bites program in the DVD “Loves Me, Loves Me Not”.

NAPCAN are continuing to receive requests for Love Bites training in regional Victoria. If you are interested in attending any of these sessions, please contact Nancy Zhang at

Children’s Week events highlight the value of children and young people’s voices

Children’s Week was celebrated across the country last week with NAPCAN holding events in both Queensland and across the Northern Territory.

The 2016 theme for Children’s Week was “Children have the right to reliable information from the media” based on Article 17 from the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The Young People and the Media Q&A Forum held in Queensland was a huge success, providing a platform to discuss the portrayal of children and young people and the importance of hearing their voices in the media. The event was moderated by NAPCAN President, Teresa Scott, with a touching welcome by 11-year-old, Queensland Children’s Week Junior Ambassador, Rosie Sellars.

Our wise and entertaining panelists included Bianca Hunt (university student), Nathan Kearney (4ZZZ), Siyavash Doostkhah (Youth Affairs Network Queensland), Sharna Norman (CREATE Foundation) and Shannon Fentiman (Minister for Child Safety).

Highlights of the discussion included personal examples about damaging stereotypes in the media, and genuine concern about the recent Valuing Children Initiative Benchmark Survey which showed the top five words used by adults to describe children as: spoilt, fortunate, lazy, selfish, and vulnerable. Overall, it was heartening to hear the honest voices of young people and the respectful way that many adults are listening to their needs and recognising the role of the media.

Events for Children’s Week were also held across the Northern Territory, with a total of 13 events taking place in Darwin, Palmerston, Batchelor, Alice Springs, Humpty Doo and Yulara.

The Northern Territory launch of Children’s Week in Darwin was hosted by the Junior Police Rangers in partnership with NAPCAN. A panel of media and youth advocates was asked questions by young people from CREATE Foundation about how children and young people are portrayed in the media. The panel was chaired by the Youth Ambassador for this year’s National Foster and Kinship Care Conference, and comprised the Assistant Minister for Youth Ngaree Ah Kit, Jared Sharp who is a child rights’ lawyer from NAAJA, Felicity James, ABC newsroom journalist and Helen Davidson, NT correspondent for The Guardian. The event also featured a special performance by Upai Purri, a local Torres Strait Islander Youth Dance Troupe.

The event in Yulara invited local children, playgroup mums and bubs and families to participate in the Children’s Voices Project (read more here), asking children to draw or write what they like about their community and what they’d like to change.

A big thank you goes out to all who attended Children’s Week events and contributed to the discussion, especially the children and young people.screen-shot-2016-11-02-at-4-12-46-pm