Writing material for the Practice Centre

Child, Youth and Family's Practice Centre is an online resource for practitioners to refer to for direction and guidance in their work with children, young people and their families/whänau. It is also available to members of the public with most of the content accessible to anyone from anywhere in the world!

The Practice Centre comprises a range of information – from policy statements that state the requirements or 'must do's' for practice – to practice guidance, tools, information and frameworks for practitioners to use as a resource in their role.

The Office of the Chief Social Worker is responsible for approving the content for the Practice Centre.

To meet the needs of practitioners, information on the Practice Centre must be accessible – this means it is in ready-to-understand language and the messages are clear and well described. The content has to be about best practice and based on what we know will improve the quality of the service children, young people and their families/whänau receive from Child, Youth and Family.

Hints and tips to consider

Here are some tips for you to refer to when drafting material for the Practice Centre:

  • Get in touch with the Manager Professional Practice in the Office of the Chief Social Worker about your proposed information and to confirm a way forward
  • Use the format or structure of similar information on the Practice Centre – if you are drafting a key information, for example, look at other key informations to get a feel for their basic format such as the ‘what's important to us’ statement
  • Language – will need to be clear, easy to understand and accurate
  • Content will reflect best practice and be evidence-based – references and additional sources of information are useful to note, and you need to be confident that these references are reliable
  • The focus of the information will weave in existing relevant practice tools, guidance and frameworks, helping practitioners understand what they will be doing in their work with children, young people and their family/whānau
  • Have your draft reviewed by a fellow team member/peer and consider asking for feedback from a colleague working in an operational role to see if it meets their needs
  • Seek a review of the information by legal services if that is required
  • Work out where on the Practice Centre you would like the information to be uploaded and any other places where you think links to the information should be made
  • Forward your draft (signed off by your manager) to the Manager Professional Practice for review; they will allocate it to a team member who will work with you to get it Practice Centre ready
  • Once a final version is confirmed and the material can be uploaded, ensure you have a plan about how staff will be advised about the new content - an announcement in Need to Know for example.