Family is the most important thing in children's lives. A loving, caring family helps children to feel good about themselves and their world.
Families are where we learn how to live, how to behave, how to treat people and how to respect culture and country. Our families share togetherness and responsibilities. We share our time, advice, support and our love!
In strong families everyone feels that they belong and have a place. They feel connected to kinship and culture.
- are loving and caring
- talk and listen to each other
- celebrate together
- handle problems together.
Strong families are the foundation of our Aboriginal community. Being part of a family gives us our sense of who we are and our place in the world.
Strong families communicate
- They talk and really listen to each other.
- They value and respect each other.
- They listen to children's feelings.
Strong families spend time together
- They play and laugh together.
- They go out together as a family.
- They try to eat together and talk about the day - even when they are busy.
- They celebrate special occasions.
- They go to cultural events together. This builds identity and connection to community.
Keep an eye on each other. If someone doesn't seem their usual self, ask if they are OK.
Strong families encourage each other
- Let people know you are proud of them.
- Show you value learning - read to children and help with homework. Older siblings can do this too.
- Celebrate successes such as achievements at school or sport.
- Help each other to enjoy social activities, sports or hobbies.
Strong families have clear rules
- They make sure everyone knows what is OK and not OK, especially children.
- They say 'no' to children when needed.
- They change rules as children get older and more responsible. As they grow up children can have a say in what the rules are.
- They involve children in household chores. It helps them learn responsibility.
Strong families face hard times together
- They talk together about how to handle problems.
- They support each other if there is separation from loved ones.
- They keep to children's routines as much as possible - school, friends, other activities. This helps children feel secure.
- They don't let children know too much about adult problems.
- They make sure children and young people have someone to talk to - a trusted family member, friend or worker.
- They check up on each other - make sure everyone is OK.
Strong families work together to create a happy home.
Children grieve too
When there is a death, remember children grieve too. You could tell them about death simply and honestly and involve them in funerals or ceremonies. It's up to you. Sometimes being involved helps children to deal with their feelings.
Children may be upset at a funeral. If you are too upset to comfort them, arrange for a trusted friend or family member to be there for them.