Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO) is an evidence-based internationally proven model, where foster carers take on a role as primary professional carer to help children and young people experiencing significant emotional or behavioural problems.
The model has been successful in New York, significantly reducing the number of children and young people in residential care.
The Australian government is currently investing $5.6 million in its trial, in an effort to transform the state’s child protection and family services system focusing on the way vulnerable children and young people are supported.
Professionalised foster carers will work with at least 28 children over two years, helping them to transition from – or avoid entering – residential care, providing full-time care for each child or young person, under the guidance of a team of practitioners in order to stabilise their behaviour.
The specialised carers will provide intensive support, complementing the essential work of volunteer foster carers by preparing children to return to their placements, or their families providing them with support on a weekly basis.
OzChild and Anglicare Victoria will recruit and train carers to deliver the specialised TFCO model in the Bayside Peninsula and Southern Melbourne areas creating at least 14 new, professionalised foster care placements a year, with OzChild focusing on children aged 7-11 years and Anglicare working with young people aged 12-18 years.
“With the support of Anglicare Victoria and OzChild, the Treatment Foster Care Oregon model has the potential to completely transform the way we support vulnerable children and young people, with life-changing impact,” said Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos
“Nothing is more important than helping our vulnerable children, and professional foster carers will help complement the work of thousands of volunteer foster, kinship and permanent carers across Victoria.”