Armadale has only centre in nation

Protective Behaviours WA chairperson Justine O'Malley, author Erin Merryn, Parkerville Child and Youth Care director Natalie Hall and Victims of Crime WA commissioner Jennifer Hoffman. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d425322
Protective Behaviours WA chairperson Justine O'Malley, author Erin Merryn, Parkerville Child and Youth Care director Natalie Hall and Victims of Crime WA commissioner Jennifer Hoffman. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d425322

It brings together doctors, police, child protection workers, psychologists and advocates to provide services to children, young people and their families who have experienced trauma from abuse.

Parkerville Children and Youth Care opened the centre in 2011 to provide medical assessment and treatment for abused children. It is designed to make it easy for families to access the necessary support services by putting them all under one roof.

Director of research, quality and development Natalie Hall said support was provided to children at the George Jones Child Advocacy Centre from the time they disclosed the abuse.

‘If they have suffered abuse or trauma, they can come here for a police interview, if required, and assessment by the Department of Child Protection if there is concern about safety and risks, but our main goal is to promote their recovery and to provide support to the family for as long as they need,’ she said.

‘This brings a lot of services to the local community so they’re easier for families to access.’

Mrs Hall said a number of services were involved when abuse was disclosed, including doctors, police and child protection, which were often based in the city, and not in one space.

‘A child may need to be examined at Princess Margaret Hospital and interviewed by police in another place in Perth and then they might have to connect to a counselling service in their local suburb,’ she said.

‘It’s really about streamlining the services for the family and making it child friendly and family friendly.’

Mrs Hall said between 200 and 300 families connected to the George Jones Child Advocacy Centre each year in some way.

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