This edition of Safe Start introduces our readers to the power of acknowledgement through the Who I Am Makes A Difference program and resources. We showcase the new documentary film ‘Bully’ with a special Child Protection Week screening, present some great resources, and highlight upcoming events promoting the safety and wellbeing of children.
As always, we welcome any questions or comments you would like to share, or topics of interest you would like included in future Safe Start editions.
Thanks for reading!
Founder and Director
Children’s Safety Australia Inc.
Introducing... Who I Am Makes A Difference®
When was the last time you felt appreciated? There is an incredible power in acknowledging people and encouraging them to achieve their dreams. The Who I Am Makes A Difference® program provides a valuable tool to facilitate this potentially life-changing process. It has been proven to help address bullying, self harm and other dangerous behaviours by building self esteem and encouraging respect for self and others. Learn how you can be a Difference Maker…
Children's Safety Australia Inc. (CSA) has recently embarked on a new project in partnership with not-for-profit organisation, Difference Makers International (DMI). After viewing the dynamic Who I Am Makes A Difference® PowerPoint presentation, CSA Founder and Director, Kim Jackson, was inspired by the power of acknowledgment depicted in the presentation, which supports CSA’s mission to encourage children and young people to reach their full potential.
As a result Kim contacted DMI Founder, Helice "Sparky" Bridges, to discuss how CSA could assist in spreading the powerful message of acknowledgement. Kim and four amazing, like-minded Brisbane-based women from various professional and personal backgrounds have since successfully completed training with Sparky and CSA has been granted permission to distribute the Who I Am Makes A Difference® resources in Australia.
The Who I Am Makes A Difference® program provides an opportunity for Difference Makers (and everyone can be a Difference Maker!!) to acknowledge others, by offering them a gift of a blue ribbon, which (if accepted) is placed about the receiver's heart. The Difference Maker describes to the recipient the difference they make, which may include praising their talents and/or outstanding qualities. As a result the recipient is appreciated, respected, loved and encouraged to achieve their dreams. In a world where many people don't receive the love and appreciation they need, the Who I Am Makes A Difference® program helps to create a peaceful, respectful and supportive community.
A range of Who I Am Makes A Difference® resources is available for sale from the CSA Resource Order Form. Kim's mother, Milly, provided the inspiration for the Acknowledgement Cards and Postcards, allowing Difference Making teachers, parents and classmates and others to document their messages of acknowledgement so the receiver can continue to be encouraged by these inspiring words.
Brisbane radio station, 96fiveFM have generously assisted CSA with the narration of the Who I Am Makes A Difference® PowerPoint presentation for Australian audiences, which can be viewed by clicking here.
CSA Trainers are also able to deliver Who I Am Makes A Difference® program presentations for teachers, and other protective adults, and students of all ages. For further information, please contact us.
Thanks to a Queensland Government Gambling Community Benefit Fund Grant, CSA is able to offer a limited number of schools within south-east Queensland a FREE 30 minute Who I Am Makes A Difference® program presentation for staff members.
This presentation is designed to lead teachers and other school staff through the Who I Am Makes A Difference® ceremony to enable them to acknowledge each other and to pass on the incredible power of acknowledgement to their students and the broader school community.
If your school is interested in taking advantage of this great offer, which must be used during Term 3 or 4 of 2012, please contact us. Limited presentations apply, so register your interest today!
The Who I Am Makes A Difference® Ceremony Card
The Who I Am Makes A Difference® Acknowledgement card
With as many as one in six Australian children bullied on a weekly basis, bullying presents a significant threat to the safety and wellbeing of children and young people. Children’s Safety Australia Inc. (CSA) have commissioned a special Child Protection Week screening of critically acclaimed documentary feature ‘Bully’ to raise the awareness of teachers and parents.
Directed by Sundance and Emmy-award winning filmmaker, Lee Hirsh, himself a victim of childhood bullying, Bully is the first documentary feature film to expose the devastating impacts of bullying.
As teachers, administrators, parents and students struggle to find answers to address the bullying crisis, Bully examines the dire consequences of bullying through the testimony of strong and courageous youth. Through the power of their stories, the film aims to be a catalyst for change in the way we deal with bullying as parents, teachers, children and society as a whole.
Bully is considered a “must see” for teachers and parents, with some experts suggesting it should be mandatory viewing for teachers. The film depicts the disturbing impacts of bullying, not only for children experiencing bullying, but also their families, friends and the entire school community.
Above all, CSA hopes this film prompts affirmative action by school administrators, teachers and parents to create a school culture where bullying is not acceptable and where children are encouraged to report bullying and are listened to and supported.
Child Protection Week provides a valuable opportunity for schools to prioritise the safety of all students. Schools can more effectively address bullying with the combined effort of administrators, teachers, parents and students. The responsibility of bystanders to report bullying behaviour and to support the child being bullied, is another recommended strategy.
The special screening will take place:
Wednesday, 5 September 2012
6.30pm for a 7.00pm screening
Indooroopilly Event Cinemas (Cinema 6)
Indooroopilly Shoppingtown, Moggill Road, Indooroopilly
Tickets $11 (includes movie nibbles and a children’s safety pack)
For bookings contact Kim on 0423 532 868 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
PLEASE BE ADVISED THIS EVENT HAS SOLD OUT:
For readers unable to attend this screening, look out for other cinemas screening Bully during its limited release. It is also anticipated Bully will be available on DVD within the next few months.
Note: 'Bully' has an M rating and is not suitable for viewing by children.
Special thanks to Mr David Vernon, Head Instructor of Team Taekwondo (Team TKD) for his generous donation of funds raised from Team TKD’s ‘Kid Power Bully Defence Courses’ to support Children’s Safety Australia Inc.
Team TKD deliver a practical, confidence-building program to address bullying in the Brisbane suburbs of Carseldine, Geebung and North Lakes. For further information, contact Team TKD on 0418 318 833.
Child Protection Week is being celebrated from 2 - 8 September 2012 with the theme, 'Protecting children is everybody's business'.
Research shows the best way to prevent child abuse and neglect is by building communities that support and value children and families.
The National Association for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) provides the following advice to all community members to help prevent child abuse and neglect, as we all have a part to play. There is no better time than Child Protection Week to ensure you are playing your part...
Parents and relatives: look out for children!
- Teach all the children in your family how to be safe with people. Learn about child abuse and neglect and warning signs.
- Listen to, reassure and believe children. Children who have experienced abuse may try to tell an adult several times before somebody hears them. If you're worried about a child in your family, there are lots of things you can do.
- Reach out to help parents of young children in your extended family - parents need all the support they can get. Let them know that it is okay to ask for help. Parenting is hard and all parents will benefit from help at times.
Neighbours: take the time
- Inform yourself about child abuse and neglect and ways you can help protect children in your neighbourhood (e.g. notice the signs of stress and lend a hand if you can).
- Take the time to get to know the families in your street so that families can give one another support to cope with the stresses of parenting.
- If you're worried about a child, don't stay silent, do something.
Local communities: keep building a child-friendly Australia!
- Community organisations - offer practical assistance to families in the neighbourhood and check that everything you do is parent-friendly (e.g. flexible hours, offering child care, helping with transport).
- Local councils - provide services for children (e.g. parks, libraries, public toilets, safe streets, parent-friendly parking, safe bike paths, cultural and social events such as family fun days or sports carnivals) and provide resources for parents (e.g. playgroup and parenting courses).
- Schools - be a community hub that offers learning environments and support for parents as well as children.
Policy makers: face the challenge of prevention
- Ensure there are child and family health nurses for home visits to all Australian families with a new baby.
- Introduce measures to reduce the level of parental alcohol abuse.
- Increase parent education and family support services in areas where there is a high level of child abuse and neglect.
Media: help spread the word!
- Help spread the word that when we know 33,000 children are abused every year, it's everyone's business. Publish these NAPCAN tips.
- Digital media industry: partner with child abuse prevention experts to keep all kids smart online and safe offline.
- Help change the focus to prevention, not just child rescue. Interview leading child abuse prevention experts so that we have a more informed public debate on prevention.
Business: play your part to support families
- Have flexible work hours and job share available to staff who are parents, and make it an attractive option.
- Partner with local community organisations (e.g. sponsor kids' sporting activities).
- Be family-friendly. Provide a play area in your shop/business, and baby change facilities, and welcome children. Do not stock junk food on low shelves where children can reach it.
For further information, please go to http://www.cwla.org/positiveparenting/tipscommunity.htm
It can be a challenge to find resources that senstively addres child sexual abuse, while providing children with important safety information. Here are two we recommend:
Some Secrets Should Never Be Kept
Safe Start has previously featured the beautiful book, 'Some Secrets Should Never Be Kept', which tells the story of a young knight, Sir Alfred, who has a terrible secret. The book was written to provide children with essential skills in self-protection, and to encourage them to always speak up.
Author, Jayneen Sanders has recently organised for Australian entertainer Debra Byrne to narrate the book via a You Tube clip. Debra's narration is just perfect. She delivers the text in the most touching manner which is sure to captivate any child. It can be accessed via:
Jayneen has also put together a song, 'My Body is MY Body' song, sung by Debra's daughter, her grandson and neighbour. It is free for anyone and everyone to use and can be found via:
Touches and Feelings
Written by Tess Rowley, author of best selling 'Everybody has a bottom', 'Touches and Feelings' is designed to help parents and caregivers protect children from sexual abuse. It can assist in raising awareness of different types of touches, encourages a child to have a say in what happens to their body, and introduces the idea of talking to a trusted adult about touches that might be confusing.
Its simple, interactive style makes it a useful little book in dealing with child protection. Touches and Feelings is a small-format paperback with 24 pages. It can be ordered via the Children's Safety Australia Inc. Resource Order Form. Single copies are $10 including delivery and less for bulk orders.
The Daniel Morcombe Foundation will be celebrating the Day for Daniel on Friday, 26 October 2012. This event provides a valuable opportunity for schools to raise the awareness of children's safety and to teach children valuable safety skills.
A variety of activities are suggested including children’s safety classroom presentations, watching the DMF ‘Foundation Red’ DVD and organising a community walk. Day for Daniel activities are designed to provide life skills for children in a fun and informative manner without causing fear.
The DMF encourage that a red flavour be incorporated in the day - linking Daniel’s favourite colour in a discrete way to the importance of children’s safety education, such as wearing something red, displaying red balloons, eating something red or writing in red. Day for Daniel is not a memorial day, it is a day to create awareness and learning!
For further information contact the DMF via www.danielmorcombe.com.au or 0434 326 435.