After a successful bid we are now delivering the new Family Connect and Support (FCS) program in the New England, Central Coast and Hunter regions. 

Funded by the NSW Department of Communities and Justice, FCS offers improved early intervention and practical support to children and families to help prevent family issues from escalating.

The program includes increased outreach to schools and hospitals, with a focus on Aboriginal families, families with children aged zero to five, and children and young people affected by mental illness. 

The Benevolent Society’s Manager of Child, Youth & Family Services Melissa Brown said bushfires, floods and COVID-19 had added to the complexity of family life.

"We focus on early intervention, providing support as soon as challenges are presenting to stop them from escalating to crisis point,” Ms Brown said.

“Family Connect and Support builds on the features of the Family Referral Service, which we delivered on the Coast and in the Hunter for more than a decade." 

"We are excited to offer more support to families via the new program. This includes Family Group Conferencing, which brings family members together with one of our impartial facilitators to plan for the safety and wellbeing of the children.”

Family Connect and Support is available at no cost via face-to-face meetings or over the phone. For more information call 1300 066 480 or email familyconnectandsupport@benevolent.org.au 

A group of FCS constituents standing together for a group photo

Left to right: Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast and Member for Terrigal Adam Crouch, Emma Gilby from the Department of Communities Justice , Melissa Brown (Manager) from The Benevolent Society , Sharon Dominic, Annette D’Adam (Team Leader), Melissa Brenna (Team Leader)