Family Matters Forums 2017

The Ballarat Diocesan Social Justice Commission partnered with Centacare Ballarat to deliver forums across the diocese focused on the many challenges families face in this modern world. The commission is very aware of the importance of supporting families to be a place where children learn to love, respect and interact with each other.  Centacare aims to engage families when they are at their most vulnerable and accessing support can be hard.  With these two priorities in mind we set about delivering a forum which provided recognition of the stress families face as well as avenues for support and hope for the future.

Father Frank Brennan, a renowned Jesuit priest, lawyer and CEO of Catholic Social Services Australia provided the opening address and the MC for the day was Tony Fitzgerald, Centacare’s CEO.  There were a number of sessions presented over the course of the day which focused on the many challenges families face such as family violence, aging parents, having the suicide conversation and promoting healthy family communication.  The focus was to ensure those in attendance gained some insight into how family challenges develop, the role they can play in alleviating them and avenues for support.

The sessions in Ballarat and Warrnambool were well attended and provided a very respectful and interactive environment. The involvement of community and government agencies such as Victoria Police, Lifeline and the Commission for Ageing, ensured the most up to date research was provided. Centacare staff enjoyed the opportunity to work alongside the Social Justice Commission and we look forward to working with the Commission into the future.

Presentations can be accessed on the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat Social Justice Commission website under Family Matters Forum.