Men’s Health Information and Resource Centre

Community NSW: Brighter Futures Working With Fathers

bf 1 Brighter Futures is an early intervention program delivered by 14 agencies across NSW and is designed to build the resilience of families and children that are at risk.

"Caseworkers should recognise and take into account the diversity of fathers"...

Brighter Futures is a program designed to provide early intervention services for families likely to be affected by domestic problems that may later escalate into child protection issues. 

It is aimed at families potentially or currently affected by issues including:

  • domestic violence
  • parental drug and alcohol misuse
  • parental mental health issues
  • lack of extended family or social support
  • parents with significant learning difficulties and/or intellectual disabilities
  • child behaviour management problems
  • lack of parenting skills/adequate supervision.

There are two ways a family can become involved in the program.

  • With a family’s permission a community agency can refer them to a Brighter Futures program Lead Agency.
  • A family that has been reported to the DoCS Helpline may be invited to join the Brighter Futures program.

Brighter Futures uses a strengths-based approach. It recognises that parents already have skills and expertise when it comes to understanding what works for their family. As a result, services and support will vary according to each family’s needs and will be provided for an average time of 18 months to two years to have a lasting effect.

Resources For Health Practitioners Working With Fathers

The program recognises the contributions that fathers make towards strengthening families and the need to engage with fathers in an appropriate way.

The practice guide to working with fathers is based on work by Andrew King formerly of UnitingCare Burnside who developed and promoted a series of strength-based approaches to working with dads. This approach offers a more positive view of men with a perspective based on the potential and actual contributions of men as fathers and their roles within specific family contexts.

Resources Available

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