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Len Cook, the Families Commissioner, uses this blog to share his views on the nature of families and the important role they play in society. Here, Len will highlight trends that need to be considered in the development and delivery of social policy and programmes.
Community-level initiatives have been widely implemented in New Zealand and overseas.
Strong, healthy, non-violent relationships are the foundation of resilient families and whānau, but current levels of family violence in New Zealand are unacceptably high.
At Superu, we are often asked how we decide what research and evaluation needs to be undertaken and how we prioritise this work. There are several factors that drive our work programme.
Superu helps build the social science evidence base by synthesising evidence on priority themes, particularly around vulnerable populations. An area of recent focus has been on children of gangs and children with a parent in prison.
In April 2015, Superu published a paper addressing the link between alcohol and family violence. Previously little focus had been given to bringing together research on the role of alcohol in family violence – specifically intimate partner violence (IPV) and child maltreatment.
Evidence informed decision making is a hot topic in New Zealand’s social sector at the moment. Knowing what works and what to fund in order to achieve the greatest impact is integral to improving social outcomes for New Zealand families, whānau and communities.
This In Focus synthesises what is known about family resilience. It shows that families’ day to day interactions are important to help build families resilience to cope with challenges and adversities.
The Ministry of Health recently published a paper on actions to address Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). Evidence provided by Superu contributed to this work.