Information for

workers

 A child with disability and their family will come into contact with a range of organisations and individuals. These might include hospitals, disability organisations and schools. Individuals can include doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, etc and all such professionals can play an enormous role in helping a family manage the challenges they face.

Families who believe they can influence their future and make choices are more likely to be stronger and cope better. One factor that families identify as being important is the attitude and support they receive from professionals.

For workers to be able to support siblings there needs to be an emphasis within organisations and governments on:
• family centred care
• a whole family approach
• prevention

Here you will be able to read more about: 
 

Find out about books suitable for different sibling ages, parents and providers 
Access relevant journal articles and resources

Supporting parents
Before parents are able to support all their children they need to be supported themselves. They are often dealing with a range of mixed feelings in response to the changes occurring within their family.

The main aim is to enable families to be better able to provide support to each other within the family and access support as needed outside the family. We want families to become stronger and feel more competent in supporting themselves.

Supporting siblings
Service providers can support siblings by assisting parents to be more able to support their children and through direct intervention with siblings themselves. The aim is to encourage children to feel more competent in dealing with their situation and being able to ask for help when needed.

Siblings Australia runs a variety of workshops that improve awareness about sibling concerns and approaches to support.

1. Service provider training programs. These programs can include:
• issues for families
• grief and disability
• the needs of siblings
• support for siblings using a ‘settings’ approach
• running groups for siblings
• organisational approaches

2. Presentations to parent groups. These sessions can include:
• Issues for siblings
• Needs of siblings
• Factors affecting adjustment
• How parents can support their children
• Other resources

Hopefully this website will encourage discussion between parents and service providers, to enable the best support for siblings.