TESTIMONIAL

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“You make everyone feel comfortable, yet get to the root of the conflict efficiently and deal with it effectively, leaving everyone involved feeling satisfied and part of the solution.”
"You can always be assured that whatever Annette is involved in it is done impeccably.”
“No task is ever too big or too small for Annette to undertake and her enthusiasm and professional manner for the job at hand is always welcomed.”
“Annette was able to recognise and articulate specific challenges which our organisation faced and was able to define strategies for improvement.”
“Thank you for being so supportive and approachable.”
“Thank you for all the energy and enthusiasm you have put into our plans. The timelines have been extremely short, and you have worked diligently and with the utmost of professionalism.”
“Annette’s major strength is her ability to assess a situation quickly and then formulate an action plan. Annette is astute in her observation and estimation of people.”
“A clear strength is Annette’s ability to maintain objectivity when guiding and counselling others.”
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Child Inclusive
Practice

Separation is a traumatic time for children and they often feel caught in the middle.  A natural response, for children, is to tell each parent what they want to hear.  They do this in the hope of keeping each parent happy and to show loyalty.

Child Inclusive Mediation allows children to have a voice as part of the mediation process.  It is useful when parents or carers have conflicting views or misunderstandings about a child’s needs and wishes.

The aim is not to provide therapy or counselling, but to gain an understanding of what life is like for your child, how they are coping and what their needs are moving forward.

The goal is for each child’s health, wellbeing and happiness to be top of mind as everyone moves forward.

How do I engage the services of a Child Consultant?

Speak with your Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner, who will work with you and your ex-partner, to decide if this is the best option for your circumstances.

Both parents sign an agreement acknowledging that their children will be meeting with a Child Consultant.

The Child Consultant meets with each parent and the mediator, separately, before meeting with your children. This helps the Consultant gain insight into your circumstances and work out the best approach to take, when spending time with your children.

Is the Child Consultant a psychologist?

Child Consultants come from a variety of backgrounds. To be a Child Consultant requires specialised training.

Children are not put in a position to say what should or should not happen or to take sides.  The Consultant uses a range of age-appropriate techniques to gain an understanding of what is important to your children and how they are coping.

The Child Consultant then attends the next mediation session and shares their findings.

This helps everyone gain a better understanding of the children’s needs, so that co-parenting agreements are made in the best interest of your children.

Can I find out What My Children Said?

A safe and supportive environment will be provided for your children.  Under the Family Law Act 1975, anything shared during the mediation process and information provided by your children is confidential.

The Child Consultant collates his/her findings and shares the key aspects of what is important to your children.  The process helps parents to better identify with the children’s needs, so important points can be considered as part of your parenting negotiations.

In some cases being heard by the courts, an Independent Children’s Lawyer (ICL) may be appointed.  There is more disclosure and investigative work done when an ICL makes recommendations.

What is an Independent Children’s Lawyer?​

If there are concerns regarding a child’s welfare, if parents are unable to resolve their disputes or a matter is complex, the court can appoint an Independent Children’s Lawyer (ICL) to represent a child’s interest in court.

An ICL will gather evidence from a variety of places.  They may speak with your children’s teachers, counsellors, source medical records or talk to witnesses.

Once the ICL has gathered all the necessary information, they will provide their independent perspective, on what arrangements and decisions are in the best interest of your children, to the court.

Mediation can help resolve matters early, minimises the likelihood of conflict escalating and lawyers having to become involved.

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“Our words and actions as parents and carers, will either build children up or bring them down.”
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