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Strengthening Families is a whole-of-government initiative administered by Family and Community Services. It brings together all the agencies you and your family are working with. Everyone meets together to develop a plan to address all your concerns, instead of you dealing with different agencies separately.

This means you don’t have to repeat the same information to lots of agencies and everyone gets to see the big picture. It also ensures you get all the help you are entitled to. Participation is voluntary, and you get to say who is involved and what information can be shared.

Strengthening Families helps you sort out things when life's challenges weigh you down. Whatever your concern or need - finding a warm comfortable home from your family, worries about your child's health or behaviour, making ends meet, your child not doing well at school, or coping with stress at the home, Strengthening Families brings together the agencies that can help your family deal with your concerns.

Your voice is important
The focus of strengthening families is always on you and your family. You choose when and where your Strengthening Families meetings are held - they could be at a marae or other community setting - and what will be discussed. You help decide which agencies will be at the meetings, and you can bring family/whanau members and friends for support. By having everyone together at the same time, you only have to tell you a story once.

At your meeting
At the first meeting, you talk about what is important to your family/whanau, and what you want to see happen. The agencies invited to be there will talk about how they will assist you and your family. Together, you and the agencies will develop a plan to help you achieve your goals. This plan identifies what everyone will be doing in the days and weeks ahead. Follow-up meetings will be held to ensure the plan is working for you.

For more information
You can get in touch with Strengthening Families through an agency you are already dealing with, or you can contact your local Strengthening Families coordinator directly.
Contact Alistair Munro at Parklands School
Phone 528 1001 or e-mail alistairm@psusi.org.nz.
Or visit our website: www.strengtheningfamilies.govt.nz