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Getting on track to support families and schools

A new team of clinicians is working with six schools across Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD) to support families with children with challenging and anti-social behaviour.

The Got It! initiative - a partnership between the NSW Ministry of Health and the NSW Department of Education - is being implemented across NSW including the Murrumbidgee region.

Got It! aims to provide support and practical help to children and their families, and also to support the school community, to help children get the most out of the opportunities available to them.

John Dean is the MLHD District Clinical Leader who is coordinating the implementation of Got It!

Mr Dean said challenging and anti-social behaviour often causes problems in many areas of a child’s life.

“It can also be stressful for their family, friends and community. Sadly, these children can often be seen as ‘naughty’, rather than as children who are struggling with organising their thoughts, feelings and behaviours,” Mr Dean said.

Mr Dean said: “This is a great initiative that allows us to support families and children early hopefully preventing problems leading to later more serious problems including contact with the legal system and mental health services.”

The Got It! team has started working with children in Kindergarten to Year 2 and their parents with schools in Wagga Wagga, Griffith, Deniliquin, Cootamundra, Junee and Tumut.

They will also be supporting teachers to implement the Fun FRIENDS social and emotional learning program.

Parents and teachers have completed questionnaires helping the team identify children who may be experiencing emotional, social or conduct problems at home or school.

“Some children and parents will participate in a 10 week program, Exploring Together, which will give them the opportunity to be part of a fun and supportive group that can improve child behaviour and family relationships and help parents deal with difficult behaviours,” Mr Dean said.

If you, or someone you know may be experiencing mental illness phone the MLHD AccessLine on 1800 800 944 to arrange local support.

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