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Key Note Speaker 

Annette Michaux


As a Director at the Parenting Research Centre, Annette leads significant, evidence informed policy and practice initiatives that help PRC clients achieve their intended outcomes. She directs several government funded initiatives including the PRC’s contribution to Emerging Minds: National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health and the Reframing Parenting Initiative. Annette drives a number of major practice design and implementation projects, including the trial of the Quality Assurance Framework for children in out-of-home care, SafeCare and Practice Framework development with Wesley Mission, SDN Children’s Services and Key Assets.

Annette has over 20 years of experience in child and family practice, policy and research management. She has also worked in frontline child welfare and community development in the UK and Australia. She has delivered keynote addresses on topics such as knowledge translation and exchange, evidence informed child and family practice, organisational and social change and improving service delivery.

Children thrive when their parents are supported: let’s tell a new child development story.


The growing gap between the reality of parenting and the ‘parenting story’ being told in Australia is getting in the way of creating meaningful and lasting change for families. To give children the best chance of healthy development we need to better support and communicate with both the public and the parents who care for them. Currently, evidence-based messages around parenting are not resonating with families, rendering the bulk of our communications ineffective.


A major research project involving 7600 Australians conducted by the FrameWorks Institute and led locally by the Parenting Research Centre has developed a powerful new narrative to change the way we talk about children and parents. This project has identified what works – and what does not – when talking about parenting in Australia and offers practical, hands-on support to help organisations change public perceptions of parenting and communicate more effectively with families. In this presentation, Annette will outline the results of the research and offer take-home tips on how we can communicate more effectively about parenting.

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Dr. Sameh Younan

My Experiences with Theraplay. 

Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve thought someone’s parenting could be improved, but just haven’t known how to go about it without risking upsetting the parent? What if there was a fun non shaming way where you could literally see the relationship between a parent and a child blossom before your eyes?

These are some of the benefits of Theraplay, an evidenced based child and family therapy endorsed by Bessel Van der Kolk and other leaders in childhood trauma to improve attachment and other outcomes for these children. In this workshop, Dr.Younan, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, will present the background to Theraplay, as well as video segments from Theraplay sessions inviting participants to reflect and comment on the interactions they see. Participants will also have the opportunity to take home some activities which they could use in their work.

Ben Thomspon & My Gago

Rosie's Place - I Wish for a Rainbow

Rosie’s Place is a community based counselling and support service for children, young people and families that have experienced sexual assault or domestic and family violence. The service supports the community of Western Sydney, advocating for children, young people and families’ fundamental human rights to safety and protection.

The workshop will focus on why Rosie’s Place sees children, how we listen to children, how we respond to what children share with us, how we walk alongside them and how we advocate for their rights. We will present on the frameworks and principles of practice that guide our work with children, as well as practical methods we use (including group work, consultation groups and utilising our publications) to listen and respond to children.

Elena Bellinato

Sing & Grow; A Music Tools Workshop

Elena is a Registered Music Therapist who has extensive experience working with families that have experienced trauma in various settings.

This workshop will discuss the benefits of using music in working with young children and their families that have experienced trauma. It will explore the benefits of music on the brain and will provide practical music tools that can be adapted in various settings.

It will be a hands on workshop using voice, instruments and movement activities. You will learn how to facilitate a music session, adapt songs and use music to assist with social skills and emotional regulation. No prior music experience is required.

Nikke Gladwin

Including Children's Voices - A Child's Perspective

Nikke Gladwin is the Coordinator of the Emotional Wellbeing and Community Development programs with Healthy Cities Illawarra and leads on the strategic development and delivery of the TALK Project that is a collaboration between Healthy Cities, Communities for Children Shellharbour, and other local partners.

She has a long history of working with children and youth services in South East England, with a primary focus on designing, building and managing places and programs to support children’s development and wellbeing. Nikke’s understanding of the way in which children play coupled with her training in trauma informed practice supports her approach to ensuring that compensatory play opportunities recreate lost opportunities for children to learn and heal whilst playing.

Join Nikke Gladwin and her young leader team to hear first hand the importance of child friendly, meaningful consultation. Gain insight and practical ideas for promoting the voices of children in your organisation.

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