Children of Prisoners: Building Resilience in a Uniquely Vulnerable Group
ACT Health Directorate, and SHINE for Kids
This qualitative needs analysis aimed to deepen the understanding of children's needs by exploring their experiences of parental incarceration. Commissioned by SHINE for Kids, it identified appropriate individual, family and community responses, informed by children, their caregivers, and other key groups; in the context of multiple system involvement (e.g. child protection, criminal justice, health, education, family support).
This needs analysis provided new insights into how service systems might work more effectively and responsively together to reduce future involvement in welfare, health and criminal justice systems, improve children's well-being and increase their participation in society. Current research informs us that children whose parents are imprisoned are likely to be affected by higher levels of disadvantage than their peers; for example they are more likely to experience multiple and complex health, social and welfare problems including poverty, family violence, substance abuse and mental health issues.