This is the final report from the research project 'Identifying Strategies to Better Support Foster, Kinship and Permanent Carers'. This project was undertaken by the Australian Institute of Family Studies and Murawin, an Aboriginal research and evaluation consultancy. The research was commissioned by the federal Department of Social Services (DSS) to identify the support needs and best practice support approaches for carers in Australia.

This project consisted of two components:

  1. a desktop review of available services and supports to carers and best practice in providing supports
  2. consultations with key stakeholders and carers.

The evidence review and consultations with carers and stakeholders identified a number of key challenges for carers. These were identified as occurring in four (overlapping) areas:

  • systemic challenges
  • challenges inherent to the caring role including meeting the needs of children, and the impact of caring on the carer, including the financial impacts
  • challenges nurturing a child’s connection with community, culture and Country
  • challenges with family contact
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