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SA Time For Kids program receives national anti-crime award

Media Release

29 October 2009

A program assisting disadvantaged children and families in regional and metropolitan South Australia has won national recognition at the 2009 Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards (ACVPA).

The Time For Kids Placement Program provides regular respite care for children from disadvantaged homes by placing them with volunteer carers on a part-time basis, providing a break for their regular carers and strengthening the children's support networks.

The Time For Kids Program received a National Certificate and cash award of $10,000, which was presented by the Minister for Home Affairs Brendan O'Connor at Parliament House in Canberra today.

The program also focuses on preventing children from offending behaviour, homelessness or dropping out of the education system by coupling them with trained carers who provide them with a strong support base.

Mr Philip Scales AM, president of the Time For Kids board of management said that since its inception in 1960, Time For Kids has linked 4500 children with volunteer carers and currently involves 153 households providing support for 163 children.

"The program can proudly claim that no child has been involved with the state's youth court while on the program, even though their backgrounds are the same as many of those who do."

Joanne Wickes, Chief Executive Officer, said the recognition of the value of their work will assist the organisation to encourage more South Australians to help children lead meaningful and positive lives.

"The need for successful early intervention is greater than ever and we will be there to meet it working in partnership with government, the community and individuals," Ms Wickes said.

"We must raise awareness in our community of the overwhelming social, health and economic difficulties many South Australian families face and invite people to be a part of the solution."

Minister O'Connor said the program's intense focus on providing disadvantaged and at risk children with a wider support network is a much needed service.

"Community and volunteer participation through these programs is vital in providing these children and their families with a platform to succeed and experience a life away from the direction of crime and violence," Mr O'Connor said.

The ACVPA is a joint initiative of the Australian, State and Territory governments which rewards outstanding community-based projects that prevent or reduce crime and violence.

Eight ground-breaking projects involving young offenders and youth at risk, Indigenous communities, religious congregations, police and community health and safety organisations have won national recognition this year.

For more information about the Australian Community Violence Prevention Awards visit


Time For Kids Placement Program, South Australia

The program provides regular respite care for disadvantaged children in South Australia by placing them with volunteer carers on a part-time basis.

More than 4500 'at risk' children have been linked with families across the state since the program began in 1960 to prevent them becoming involved in offending, homelessness or dropping out of the education system.

Key outcomes:

  • 153 households currently caring for 163 children
  • Enduring relationships between children and carers that outlast the program
  • No child has been involved in the state's youth court while on the program, notwithstanding their backgrounds being the same as those who do.

Media contacts: Scott Kelleher 0418 159525, Caterina Giugovaz 0418 221798. For detail on the awards visit