Better family group conferencing

The family group conference (FGC) doesn’t belong to us – it belongs to children, young people and families. Our job is to ensure that they get the best service – empowering and supportive – and one that delivers outcomes that ensure long-term positive change.

In many cases for whānau this is not the experience that they have from us or the FGC process. Yet we know that back in the 1990s, FGCs were seen by all as an effective and appropriate way of working together, so what has changed? We know there is some really good family group conferencing happening around the country – so how do we tap into that good practice and make every FGC the best it can be?

The FGC does not rely on any one person for its effectiveness. The process requires everyone to play their part and play it well.

We can reflect on our practice while watching how family group conferences were convened and held back in the early days of the Act. Some of you may recognise yourselves or friends and colleagues from many years ago.

Practice standards

Quality conferencing leads to better outcomes for mokopuna and their family/whānau.