National Stepfamily Awareness Day (Sunday 25 July) is a chance for step and blended families to celebrate their success in creating, sustaining and nurturing their families.
Child Support Agency (CSA) Director of Parent Support Services, Toni Brown saidThe CSA works with organisations such as Stepfamilies Australia to help support families affected by separation.
Many CSA customers live in step or blended families. The CSA has a variety of resources as well as links to organisations such as Stepfamilies Australia to support separated parents who repartner
Stepfamilies Australia Executive Officer Steve Martin saidWith one in five families in Australia either a step or blended family, there is a need for more support services for families repartnering after separation.
The recent launch of the National Stepfamilies Australia Network ensures that repartnered families have increased access to information, resources, counselling and education.
Step and blended families face a range of unique and complex challenges, from dealing with the breakdown of the original family to developing relationships with new partners and siblings as well as their extended families.
More than half of parents who separate, re-partner. Yet the dynamics and complexity of the new family relationships mean step or blended families are at a higher risk of separation than so called intact families.
Biological families may have family trees but stepfamilies have family forests! It is important they are aware there are variety of support services to help them through the more challenging times.
The Stepfamilies Australia website www.stepfamily.org.au has a range of resources for step and blended families. These include practical tips and information on the latest Family Relationship Centre courses and workshops to help make stepfamilies work
Parents can visit www.csa.gov.au or call 131 272 to find out more about support services in their local area.
Toni Brown saidThe Child Support Agency has a range of support products and services for separated parents.
CSA publications such as the Me and My Changing Family booklet are designed to help stepfamilies build healthy relationships and deal effectively with the tensions and challenges of new family arrangements
Although stepchildren are not normally included in child support assessments, I encourage parents to contact the CSA on 131 272 to update their contact details and advise of any change in circumstances (such as the birth of a new child) to ensure their child support assessment is accurate.
Media Enquiries: Declan McGrath 0434664802