Dr Kirsty Nowlan


Dr Kirsty Nowlan is an Executive Director with The Benevolent Society. She is also the Co-Chair of the Every Child campaign which aims to ensure that families get the skills and support they need so that every child can thrive. Previously, Kirsty was Global Director of Public Policy at World Vision where she led advocacy initiatives in areas including child mortality and child protection. Kirsty holds a PhD in international law and politics.


Reframing Parenting: how we can change public perceptions of parenting in Australia (Oral Paper Presentation)

The growing gap between the reality of parenting and the ‘parenting story’ being told in Australia is getting in the way of creating meaningful and lasting change for families. To give children the best chance of healthy development we need to better support and communicate with the parents who care for them. However, evidence-based messages around parenting are not currently resonating, rendering the bulk of our communications ineffective.

A major research project involving 7600 Australians conducted by the FrameWorks Institute and led locally by the Parenting Research Centre in partnership with The Benevolent Society, Department of Social Services and others, has developed a powerful new narrative to change the way we talk about parenting. This project has identified what works – and what doesn’t – when talking about parenting in Australia and offers practical, hands-on support to help organisations change public perceptions of parenting and communicate more effectively with families.

This session will outline key messages from the research and how the results are being implemented in three major Australian campaigns: Every Child (coordinated by The Benevolent Society), as well as the Department of Social Services-funded National Community Awareness Raising Strategy and the Building Capacity of Australian Parents trial.

This session will be of interest to professionals who need to communicate effectively about parenting support and/or with parents directly.

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