Child Protection Week – Dr Neil Carrington

While the safety of our children is a continuous concern, new research finds that just one in three (30%) Australians understand the importance of teaching children the skills necessary to identify unsafe situations, personal space and how
to seek help from trusted adults.

The research of over 2,000 Australians carried out by child protection organisation Act for Kids reveals that two thirds (61%) of parents do not believe their child knows what to do when they feel unsafe. A staggering 45% also admit that their child would struggle to identify a safe adult to confide in.

Learn to be safe with Emmy and friends™ is the only gold standard evaluated protective behaviours program in Australia, which teaches children, young people and adults how to keep themselves safe and work towards reducing violence and abuse in the community.
A recent collaboration between Act for Kids, Griffith University, QUT and James Cook University found those that had completed protective behaviour programs demonstrated increased knowledge of interpersonal safety and an increase of confidence in disclosing harm. The study also recommended further integration of parents in teaching these skills to improve children’s personal safety skills .

During Child Protection Week, Act for Kids is highlighting the need for parents and schools to work together to teach protective behaviours to
provide our children with the ability to detect and react to unsafe situation.

Listen to the podcast here.

Dr Neil Carrington, CEO at Act for Kids

Dr Neil Carrington joined Act for Kids as Chief Executive Officer in August 2010, bringing with him a wealth of knowledge and expertise as an experienced educator, counsellor and leader. Dr Carrington started his career as a teacher in Cunnamulla, a remote community west of Brisbane with a high Indigenous population. Here he saw bright, young Indigenous children who were naturally clever but struggled to excel because their needs weren’t being met by mainstream education. This realisation drove him to complete a postgraduate degree in Special Education, and develop a strong interest in child development.

With an additional Master’s Degree in Special Education, a Master’s Degree in Counselling and Guidance, and a PhD in Educational Psychology; Dr Carrington’s background has been a strong foundation to Act for Kids’ new work in developing the education and training of child protection practitioners with the goal of further improving practice across the sector.

Prior to joining Act for Kids, Dr Carrington was the Foundation National Director of the Leadership Centre for the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) where he provided professional development for education professionals in Australia and encouraged sector best practice.
Previously Dr Carrington spent three years as Director of Teaching and Learning at Queensland University of Technology, and six years as Director of Education for the Mater Health Services, where he was responsible for all organisational and professional development, education, and training for over 6,000 medical, nursing, allied health and administrative/executive staff.

Dr Carrington also lectured in Child Psychology, Educational Psychology and Teaching Practice at Queensland University of Technology and the University of Western Sydney, and he was formerly the Director of School Experience at the University of New England.
Dr Carrington was a Harvard Club of Australia Fellow 2012-13. He was awarded a prestigious scholarship to attend the CEO program at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Business. Dr Carrington also serves on the Board of Business South Bank.

He also provides a consultancy service to a number of organisations advising on executive coaching, training and professional development, leadership and management and advanced communication skills. All of Dr Carrington’s speaker fees go directly to Act for Kids and to date, he has donated more than two million dollars.

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