Overview and Final Report
The transition to parenthood is recognised as a period of high risk for the onset of family violence in heterosexual relationships. It is also known that family violence, including intimate partner violence, occurs in LGBTIQ+ relationships. There are significant knowledge gaps in the understanding of family violence risk during the transition to parenthood for LGBTIQ+ parents and strategies to prevent family violence for LGBTIQ+ communities. The New Parents, New Possibilities project aims to address these gaps in knowledge, building an evidence base around specific domestic and family violence risk and protective factors during the transition to parenthood for LGBTIQ+ parents.
Led by drummond street’s Centre for Family Research and Evaluation and funded by Respect Victoria, the project used a co-production methodology to engage with LGBTIQ+ parents and perinatal service providers in the research, design and piloting of family violence primary prevention initiatives.
The final suite of primary prevention initiatives, informed by the research findings and co-developed with a diverse range of stakeholders, include resources for the perinatal sector, LGBTIQ+ parents, and for family and community. At our launch event in July 2021, we explored the research findings and resources, and heard from parents and experts on their experiences and perspectives. You can rewatch the launch event further below on this page.
View the Final Report by clicking the image above or the link below:
Perinatal Sector resources
These new and prospective resources aim to address gaps in practice-level skills and understanding, as well as organisation-wide recognition of LGBTIQ+ people, families and LGBTIQ+ family violence within the perinatal sector. These resources are designed for reproductive services, midwives and birthing hospitals, maternal and child health services and other community and health agencies working with families during the transition to parenthood.
Perinatal Sector Training
The Perinatal Sector Training aims to address gaps in practice-level skills and understanding of LGBTIQ+ people, families and LGBTIQ+ family violence within the perinatal service sector. The training promotes reflection on and discussion of LGBTIQ+ language and concepts, family forms and pathways to parenthood and highlights key findings from this research.
CFRE offers a half-day training seminar of 2.5–3 hours which involves (1) participant pre-reading of a suite interactive case studies, designed to prompt thinking around the sessions’ aims and objectives and (2) an online group, interactive session, conducted via Zoom. This training can be tailored to meet the specific needs of organisations.
A series of four webinars were developed to build on the original sector training to enable professional development for those who are unable to commit to group training. The four part series consists of 30 minute modules:
Part I of the series, LGBTIQ+ Family Formation and Reflective Practice, serves to introduce the subject matter and focusses on understanding and awareness of how LGBTIQ+ people create their families, and what inclusive practice might look like within perinatal service delivery.
Part II, Approaching Risk Assessment with Curiosity and Responsiveness, introduces risk factors for family violence in LGBTIQ+ people’s transition to parenthood, and builds knowledge amongst practitioners to address these in their work.
Part III, Referral Pathways and Whole of Service System Responsibility, highlights signs or indicators clients may need help. This session aims to build accountability and support through improved collaboration within the service system.
Part IV, Primary Prevention: Considering Policies, Representation and Partnerships, aims to conceptualise organisational and system level changes that could enable implementation of an intersectional framework across the service system. Click below to view the webinar: Perinatal Sector Webinar Series
Interactive Case Studies
Interactive case studies were developed to illustrate diverse examples of the transition to parenthood for LGBTIQ+ parents. The case studies bring the research findings to life, highlighting not only the diversity within LGBTIQ+ families and diverse pathways to family formation but also the key risk and protective factors identified through the research. View the case studies below: Interactive Case Studies
The New Parents, New Possibilities Perinatal Sector Booklet is designed to sit alongside the seminar/webinar series and to exist as a standalone resource for perinatal service providers. This resource provides a summary of the research findings relevant to the perinatal sector, as well as primary prevention practice tips for organisations and practitioners. The booklet also provides an overview of some key strengths of LGBTIQ+ parents, reflections on positive service experiences, as well as a resource list of LGBTIQ+ and universal services for families in Victoria.
Click the image above or the link below to download the sector booklet:
Resources for LGBTIQ+ parents
The New Parents, New Possibilities Parent Series focuses on promoting respectful relationships for LGBTIQ+ people in the perinatal period. The transition to parenthood is an exciting and demanding time for LGBTIQ+ parents, as it is for all parents. As we adjust to the many, varied changes in our day-to-day lives and learn to care for babies or children, we can find ourselves facing surprising challenges and needing to reflect and reassess how to best look after ourselves and our close relationships. Parents who take the time to intentionally consider and actively co-plan for these challenges prior to and in the early stages of parenthood have reported that their reflective processes and shared decision making has built resilience and strengthened their co-parenting relationships.
The parent booklet (available for download below) is designed to be used by prospective or new LGBTIQ+ parents. The booklet begins by highlighting some of the strengths of LGBTIQ+ parented families and concludes with a resource list of services for parents who feel they might need a bit of additional support during this time.
Click the image above or the link below to download the parent booklet:
The LGBTIQ+ group parent seminars normalise challenges and fears, and promote reflection on hopes and values within the parenting team. The seminar is for LGBTIQ+ families expecting a baby, child or children, as well as those who have recently brought a child home, it is inclusive of people who have used a diversity of pathways to family formation, including assisted reproductive technologies, adoption, fostering and surrogacy.
This program is made up of 3 x 90 minute seminars full of fun activities that get you thinking about the big transition to parenting. If you are parenting solo you can bring a friend, family member or anyone who is supporting you - if you wish. These sessions aim to boost your confidence and assist you in your relationships with partners, co-parents and family members, as well as help you get used to being a family. The program is low stress (we don’t care if babies cry) and you can share as much or as little as you like.
Resources for Family and Community
This booklet is available for download by clicking the image above or link below:
Rewatch the online launch of New Parents, New Possibilities to learn about our unique findings, be introduced to our case studies, and hear from experts and families. This forum was part of Respect Victoria’s research seminar series Building the evidence to stop violence before it starts.