Our new website launched on Friday and we are delighted with the new layout and the amazing pictures that the artist and web designer, Carol Green has created for us. Carol has worked with us in a couple of TTANZ projects, creating live sketchnoting to help a family keep track of the complicated talk involved in devising their family plan, and assisting us by sketchnoting during a planning meeting with professionals. We’ll be gradually adding more information and resources to this website. In particular we want to create some resources for practitioners to download to help them in their work with children and young people.
Our team continues to juggle a range of projects and we are glad to be talking with SLTs who are keen to come on board with our projects.
We currently hold a number of court-appointed Communication Assistant roles for witnesses, complainants and defendants across the youth court, district court and high courts, and we’re looking to expand our team for this work both within and outside the Auckland region.
We are providing speech-language therapy assessments and interventions for children and teenagers, mainly those involved with Child Youth and Family and these roles involve us going to specialised residences, care homes and schools to work in partnership with the teams involved. We try to ensure our interventions assist to make it easier for children and young people to participte in the important things they are involved in and express themselves and understand the talk across the whole of their lives.
Our pilot project with Child Youth and Family Youth Justice is well-underway and we are enjoying the opportunity to work intensively with a very enthusiastic team. We have been developing a range of practical resources for staff to use in their direct work with young people and their families, and have been assisting the team to identify communication goals they want to work on in their interactions with young people whether in individual meetings, at Court or Family Group Conferences. We are also exploring how best to capture the voices of young people involved with youth justice so they can give their views on how communication can be adapted to make things easier for them.
Professional workshops are underway with Gateway assessors, Forensic Sexual Assault assessors and a youth health team, and we are looking forward to working with staff from the Youth Units at two Corrections facitilites in the next month.
Sally Kedge wrote a submission about the changes to the Children, Young Persons, and Their Families Act recently. It is great that children and young people’s voices are central to the changes but ensuring that all can express their views and understand all discussions that relate to them will require careful thought.