The Victorian Protecting Children Awards recognise dedicated teams and individuals working within government and community services who make protecting children their business every day.
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The Awards recognise staff working across all areas of the child protection and family support service programs in Victoria by acknowledging the varied work, commitment and dedication to service excellence and leadership at the highest standard, as well as recognising innovative education initiatives and contributions to policy and practice.

The Awards also acknowledge the valuable contribution of individuals and the broader community who play their part to achieve the protection and wellbeing of children and young people, and their families.

Collectively, we all have a responsibility in raising community awareness to help promote, protect, prevent and reduce harm to children and young people, and their families in our community.

We encourage nominations from foster and kinship carers, academics, policy, program, supervisory and direct service staff from community, government or academic organisations in the following fields:

  • Child protection
  • Youth justice
  • Out-of-home care
  • Family support
  • Mentoring and peer education
  • Neighbourhood houses
  • Mental health
  • Alcohol and drug services
  • Family violence services

The Awards bring together workers across the vast and varied spectrum of child protection and family services.

2018 Award winners

Congratulations to our 2018 Victorian Protecting Children Award winners.

This year saw an outstanding number of nominations. We acknowledge and appreciate the time and work gone into these nominations.

This years award ceremony took place on Monday 3 September at the Grand Ballroom, Pullman Melbourne on the Park, East Melbourne.

View the 2018 Victorian Protecting Children Award winners (Word)

Award categories

The 2018 Victorian Protecting Children Awards recognise excellence in 15 categories. Nine are open to everyone, while six categories are for Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) staff only.

Two of the Victorian Protecting Children Awards honour the memory of the visionary Robin Dennis Clark (1936 - 2001) who greatly influenced child and family related policy and practice in Victoria.

Robin Clark leadership award

This award recognises an individual, team, or group at any level of leadership who inspires others to act wisely and care deeply about achieving the best outcomes for non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal children, young people and their families. They may mentor, support, encourage or educate others. Nominees are visionary and innovative in their approach to practice, policy or research and education.

Robin Clark making a difference award

This award is offered to an individual, team, or group within the child and family service sector, who has made an exceptional contribution to directly improve the lives of non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal children, young people and families in Victoria. This can be in partnership or collaboration with government and non-government agencies.

Education initiative award

This award recognises an individual, team or group that has demonstrated success improving educational outcomes for non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal children and young people in child protection. This may include mentoring or supporting children in care to engage with and/or make progress within education settings, developing education resources, implementing an innovative approach to bringing the education and child protection systems together, supporting participation in early years and pre-school activities or facilitating access to mainstream education, vocational education, job training or skill building programs.

Minister's award for innovation in protecting children

This award recognises an individual, team or group demonstrating innovative approaches and creative intervention to achieve the best possible outcomes for children, young people and their families. This innovation can be demonstrated across the child, youth and family services sector through case management, education, prevention and early intervention, or the provision of care to children and young people in out-of-home care (including secure welfare services). 

Carer award

This award recognises past and present accredited foster or kinship carers who have made a significant contribution to the lives of non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal children and young people where child protection has been involved through the provision of formal foster care in Victoria.

CREATE award

This award gives Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children and young people aged 8 - 25 years the opportunity to nominate someone such as a carer, support worker or agency who has made a positive difference to their lives, particularly through assisting them to have a voice within the out-of-home care system.

This award is managed by the CREATE Foundation and will be judged by a committee of children and young people.

Find more information at the CREATE Foundation website.

The modelling a generous community award

This award recognises someone who has made a significant contribution to enhancing the safety and wellbeing of vulnerable Victorian children; through demonstrating the highest level of sustained personal commitment to meaningfully connecting children to their local community.

Note: This award is managed by the Commission for Children and Young People.

The Walda Blow award

This award was established in partnership with the Victorian Commissioner for Aboriginal Chidlren and Young People, in memory of Aunty Walda Blow – a proud Yorta Yorta and Wemba Wemba elder who lived her life in pursuit of equality.

In Aunty Walda’s name this award recognises contributions of an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander  person in Victoria to the safety and wellbeing of Aboriginal children and young people.

Note: This award is managed by the Commission for Children and Young People.

Excellence in child protection award (DHHS staff)

This award recognises an individual, team or group from DHHS that demonstrates innovation, and works collaboratively with colleagues by sharing knowledge and information which contributes to positive outcomes, establishes effective partnerships across the department and the sector to achieve enhanced client outcomes.

Emerging leader in child protection award (DHHS staff) - NEW

This award recognises an individual from DHHS who demonstrates talent as an emerging leader. This individual leads by example, demonstrates innovation and promotes collaboration and stewardship, builds strong relationships that support trust and credibility, and can bring out the best in colleagues and clients.

This individual embraces the department’s core values, has mentoring qualities, creates a culture of respect that fosters an atmosphere of capability and achievement, and is committed to deliver the best outcome for vulnerable children, young people and their families.

Award criterion: Nominees must be employed at CPP5 and CPP6 level.

Rising star award (DHHS staff) - NEW

This award recognises an individual from DHHS who demonstrates a keen willingness to learn and is committed to providing high quality intervention to children and families. This person is compassionate and a highly motivated individual, and is someone who goes above and beyond in delivering a higher standard of excellence in protecting children and young people.

This individual must have a minimum of 24 months employment with DHHS at the time of nomination - as at 31 March 2018.

Award criterion: Nominees must be employed at CPP4 level.

Best new talent award (DHHS staff) - NEW

This award recognises an individual from the DHHS who demonstrates professional growth, drive and commitment, with aspiring qualities as a new child protection practitioner.

This individual must be a new comer to the child protection industry and have a maximum of 24 months employment with the DHHS at the time of nomination - as at 31 March 2018.

Award criterion: Nominees must be employed at CPP3 level.

Excellence in case practice support award (DHHS staff) - NEW

This award recognises an individual, team or group demonstrating innovative approaches and creative intervention to support positive contact and achieve best possible outcomes between children and young people in out-of-home care, and their families.

Award criterion: Nominees must be employed at CPP2 level.

Chief Practitioner’s award (DHHS staff)

The Chief Practitioner’s award recognises an individual, team or group working in the DHHS child protection program that promotes best practice, commitment and leadership. This award is aimed exclusively at the department’s child protection practitioners.

NAPCAN Play your part award - Victoria

The NAPCAN Play your part award is presented at the Victorian Protecting Children Awards by a NAPCAN representative for Inspiring Prevention Initiatives.

The award process is managed separately through NAPCAN. Find further information at the NAPCAN website.

How to nominate

Step 1: Read the nomination guide

Read the Nomination guide - 2018 Victorian Protecting Children Awards  (Word) , including the new terms and conditions, and review the submission requirements of entry for the awards.

Step 2: Determine who to nominate

Determine who to nominate – an individual or team.

Discuss the nomination with the nominee’s supervisor or equivalent. You are required to get their endorsement for all nominations.

Step 3: Register your details on the online submission system

Register your details on the Victorian Protecting Children Awards online nomination portal.

Note: All nominations must be submitted through the online system. To discuss this further, please contact the awards secretariat by telephone on 03 9096 2305 or email protectingchilden.awards@dhhs.vic.gov.au.

Step 4: Log in to the online submission system

Log in to the Victorian Protecting Children Awards online nomination portal and prepare the nomination form by typing directly into the electronic form - making sure you keep within the total 800 word count.

Step 5: Complete your online nomination

Complete your online nomination(s) by 11.50 pm, Tuesday 15 May 2018 using the Victorian Protecting Children Awards online nomination portal.

Step 6: Accept your nomination (shortlisted nominees only)

Shortlisted nominees will be contacted in late June and asked to accept their nomination.

Each individual nominee and member of a team will be required to submit the safety screening documentation. Copies of the screening documentation can be downloaded at the bottom of this page.

Note: All team members are now required to complete national police checks.

Key dates

Nominations period: Monday 9 April - Sunday 20 May 2018

Judging period: Friday 25 May - Friday 22 June 2018

Screening period: Monday 25 June - Wednesday 1 August 2018

Finalists announced: early August 2018

Awards ceremony: Monday 3 September 2018

Contact

Victorian Protecting Children Awards Secretariat

Phone:+ 61 3 9096 2305

Email: protectingchildren.awards@dhhs.vic .gov.au

Mail: GPO Box 4057, Melbourne 3001, Victoria, Australia

Download the guides and forms

Screening documents

Shortlisted individual nominees and teams will be contacted in late May and asked to submit the following documents.