Effective child safety within parishes, agencies and entities cannot be achieved without the involvement of parents and guardians. Parents and guardians are critical partners in promoting the safety of children and young people.
At the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne, we commit to honouring the trust that has been placed in our parishes, agencies and entities and supporting the crucial partnership with parents and guardians that serves to strengthen the safety of children and young people.
We commit to:
Specifically, we wish to support the role of parents and guardians as protectors and educators of their children.
As protectors, parents and guardians:
As educators, parents and guardians:
The Protecting God’s Children Parent Resource: A Catholic Parent’s Guide to Keeping Their Kids Safe is a protective behaviours resource aimed at supporting Catholic parents of children aged 5-12 years. The resource helps parents teach children a range of important personal safety skills, supports the development of emotional intelligence skills and promotes a child’s understanding of the right to feel safe through engaging activities and storybooks.
Using the concept of "basket fillers", the resource begins by exploring the theme, “God gave all children the right to feel safe at all times” and sequentially builds on:
Whilst we maintain that adults are ultimately responsible for maintaining safe environments for children, it is just as important to empower children to recognise when they are feeling unsafe and to tell a trusted adult (or adults) so that action is taken to help them be safe and feel safe. As children’s first and most enduring educators, parents are best placed to begin conversations with their children in an age and developmentally appropriate way. Building on the parental bond established through trust and love, these conversations model for them that it is okay to “talk about anything” and that we are approachable and “we will listen”.
Developed by Andrea Musulin (Director of Safeguarding, Catholic Archdiocese of Perth), this resource has been adapted by the Professional Standards Unit (PSU) for use by families within the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.