Children & Families

NTCOSS is a key stakeholder in facilitating  the engagement of the Department of Children and Families, key peaks, research institutions and relevant community based organisations in relation to child protection and wellbeing of children and families in the Northern Territory. We know from research that service provision to meet the needs of disadvantaged children and families needs to embedded along a service continuum inclusive of early intervention, prevention and a crisis response. The growing number of children in out of home care in the NT, especially the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children, is of great concern and can only be addressed if comprehensive, long term, place based, culturally competent service delivery is provided to support families before reaching crisis point. Advocacy and collaborative processes are crucial to ensure the wellbeing and safety of children and families and should be a main focus in the development and delivery of services across the Northern Territory.

Current involvement


The NT Council of Social Service Inc. (NTCOSS) is proud to have been a part of developing the NTCOSS Child and Family Wellbeing Framework

This framework has been the result of over 18 months of consultation across the Northern Territory including focus groups, forums, group and individual meetings with key stakeholders. Some of these were led by NTCOSS but others were led by member organisations who all had the same commitment to the project.

We have developed this framework because we want to see a better outcome for children and families in the NT. We believe it needs to be a coordinated system and one that starts well before a child is identified as ‘at risk’. We need a whole of government approach to this, at both a Commonwealth and NT level.

We hope the framework will generate discussion and lead to a change in the way we respond to our children and their families.


Cross Sector Orientation Workshop 2015presentations

Cross sector induction

DCF – NGO Regional Children and Families Partnership in Alice Springs and Barkly

NTCOSS co-facilitates the Department of children and Families(DCF)  and NGO Partnership meetings in Alice Springs and Tennant Creek. This partnership is seen as a vehicle to contribute to the DCF commitment to improved engagement at the local level with the Non Government sector to provide better care and protection service pathways for vulnerable children, young people and their families. One of the issues of concern to all is the ever increasing number of Children and Young people in Out of home care is especially the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. The partnership also contributes to the building of capacity and strength within the sector in a coordinated and collaborative manner. Some of the  functions of the partnership are

  • Provide strategic advice on the development of the partnership
  • Identify strategies and collective responses at the operational level to address existing local or emerging complex child protection, neglect and wellbeing issues
  • Develop and promote a shared understanding of legislation, policy, procedures and practice standards
  • Provide input into planning, review and priority setting
  • Identify and increase opportunities for collaboration, resource sharing to build the capacity of Government and Non – Government organisations

The membership consist of managers from partner organisations providing supports to children, young people and their families and DCF.

Relevant documentation:-

Principles for NGOs                   
VicHealth The Partnerships Analysis Tool            
Principles for NGOs
Regional Children and Families Partnership Collaborative Guidelines        
SNAICC Opening Doors Through Partnerships


Development of a Child and Family Wellbeing Framework

NTCOSS in partnership with Foster Carer’s Association NT, NAPCAN and Anglicare NT are holding a forum to create a Strategic plan and vision for the sector in relation to the work with the children, young people and their families. The process of developing a framework has not been finalized and the website will be updated as this project progresses. Attached are the presentations provided which provide contextual information to the NT and child protection issues. The framework is still in its draft form and a strategic plan will be developed over the next months. Please contact Wendy Morton if you are interested to receive further details ph. (08) 8948 2665.

Dr Howard Bath presentation          
Professor Fiona Arney presentation


Communities for Children

The delivery of Communities for Children is complex; there are competing demands and high community and funding body expectations. NTCOSS has been on the reference group for the Alice Springs C4C provided by Anglicare as the facilitating partner. Please refer to link for more detail re the implementation of Communities for Children in Alice Springs.



For general information the Galiwinku Community Statement to Prevent Family Violence:
Galiwinku Community Statement to prevent family violence