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03 January 2022 Posted by 

A SHADOW PANDEMIC IS EMERGING

Little lives matter in Blacktown
DALLAS SHERRINGHAM
A SHADOW pandemic has emerged in the child safety sector with Blacktown’s child protection organisation Act for Kids’ waiting lists for services increasing right across the region.
The organisation has more than 100 children who have experienced trauma waiting for life-changing therapy and overall referrals have skyrocketed by 30% since the start of the pandemic.
 
Last year, more than 480,000 reports were made to child protection authorities in Australia, with 48,886 children confirmed to have suffered abuse or neglect. In that time, 1 in 32 Australian children received child protection services.
 
To raise desperately needed funds for its critical Integrated Therapy Services, Act for Kids launched ‘The Imaginary Toy Store at Christmas, with all proceeds going towards helping heal kids from trauma and supporting a child’s right to imagination.
 
The Imaginary Toy Store allowed the public to buy imaginary toys which they could share digitally while supporting children in need. 
 
Act For Kids CEO Dr Katrina Lines said kids who had experienced trauma often had their right to imagine taken away. 
 
“Children who have been abused or exposed to trauma may experience a range of cognitive developmental issues which means they cannot always ‘imagine’ or ‘create’ situations in their mind which impacts their ability to do the simplest of things like playing with toys, dancing or singing,” Dr Lines said.
 
“Early childhood intervention, care and therapy all play a critical role in supporting and healing the minds of traumatised children. We have psychologists, occupational therapists and speech pathologists who provide an integrated therapy service to meet their needs.
 
“Christmas can be stressful for a lot of children and young people who have experienced trauma because they do not have a safe home.”
 
To kick off the Imaginary Toy Store’s launch, Budget Direct made a $50,000 donation. 
 
“We’re thrilled to donate $50,000 to support Act for Kids to continue their vital service in helping vulnerable kids heal from trauma,” Director Corporate Services Trevor Jeffords said.
 
“The organisations that provide support and dig deep, the more help Act for Kids can provide children who have experienced neglect and abuse.”
 
Last financial year, Act For Kids provided therapy services and family services to more than 25,000 children.
 
Every donation or purchase makes a difference to little lives. Details: https://imaginarytoystore.com.au/
   


editor

Publisher
Michael Walls
michael@accessnews.com.au
0407 783 413

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