Centre announces its first Ambassador for Children, Aunt Sue Blacklock

At a special meeting in Sydney, 28 January 2014, Director of the Centre Fiona Arney announced Aunt Sue Blacklock as the Centre's first Ambassador for Children. Aunt Sue Blacklock is a prominent and respected Aboriginal Elder and passionate campaigner for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Learn more.


Dr Sara McLean interviewed on out-of-home care

Research Fellow Dr Sara McLean was interviewed by Anglicare Vic on managing the impact of out-of-home care on children. Watch her YouTube interview.

Shaping child protection in the 21st Century - the Centre launches key new book

A broader definition and understanding of what constitutes child abuse and a greater focus on tackling the risk factors that lead to abuse, are key themes in Professor Fiona Arney and Emeritus Professor Dorothy Scott's book: Working with Vulnerable Families, A Partnership Approach, 2nd edition.

Centre staff win Academic Excellence Awards

Centre staff at the awardsCongratulations to Associate Professor Leah Bromfield, Dr Sara McLean (pictured, centre right) and Kate Greenfield (pictured, centre left) for having their hard work and dedication to the Centre recognised at the 2013 Academic Excellence Awards.

Centre Director Professor Fiona Arney said: "These awards are a fantastic achievement, recognising the talents of our staff and the quality of our research.

"It is this research which builds knowledge in the arena of child protection policy and practice and which directs the teaching and learning programs of those students who come to study at our Centre".

Associate Professor Leah Bromfield won two awards at the Ceremony.

She was awarded the Mid-Career Researcher Award, and as one of five Leading Researchers, in recognition of her outstanding reputation and significant contribution and influence on the national and international child protection research agenda, in particular through sustained high quality (and volume) of published outputs. Leah bridges the gap between research to policy and public practice through traditional academic mechanisms, and where applicable through non-traditional means, such as media interviews and appearances. Her expertise has been recognised through her involvement in national and international child protection inquiries and processes and committees, her most recent appointment being appointed Chief Investigator and Professorial Fellow to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Leah's life-long learning approach to the academic and personal development of her students, Research Assistants, Associates and Post-Doctoral Fellows was also highlighted, as was her creation of an atmosphere where research thrives. Leah is known by colleagues for her passion, commitment and purpose, and as a Deputy Director who leads by example. Leah inspires her students to pursue research excellence through her inclusive, open, 'hands on' mentoring style and the implementation of various learning strategies that draw on their strengths through interactive internal workshops, constructive supervision and obtaining feedback. Leah is always first to nurture and celebrate talents and successes within the Centre.

Dr Sara McLean was awarded the Early Career Researcher Award for her highly collaborative style as a researcher with a focus on outreach and engagement across the child welfare sector, both nationally and internationally. She has vast experience in clinical work in both community and interagency multidisciplinary teams that support children and adolescents with significant mental health and behavioural concerns. In her current role as Research Fellow at the Centre, Sara combines her clinical knowledge and research skills to examine the clinical support needs of children who have experienced early life adversity. Her research focus is on the development of practical supports and on conducting research that is relevant to the 'real world' complexity of working with children and families. She is also passionate in her support for a new generation of child protection researchers and is dedicated to building capacity and demonstrating mentorship through PhD and Honours supervision. Sara's Honours students have all obtained first class honours results. Sara has also formed collaborations with academics aroung the world, with non-government and government service providers and peak bodies. Her expertise is also recognised as a sought after trainer for government and non-government organisations and through her roles on expert committees and working groups regarding children in residential and foster care.

Kate Greenfield was nominated for Research Support - Professional Staff Award. As Centre coordinator, Kate's management, leadership and tireless efforts has led the Centre through its recent transformation from block funding to project funding model, and is renowned for her excellent management and support services at the Centre. She has dramatically increased the Centre's external research funding, the dissemination of our research through public communications, media and our newly-designed website. Kate also embodies the spirit of the Centre - excellence, integrity, pragmatism and fun. She is a much loved member of the team and a joy to have in the Centre - personally and professionally.

Areas of study and research

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