Policies and guidelines

Policies and guidelines for funded services

Contracting

Agencies funded by FACS must operate in accordance with their contract and with legislation, policies and guidelines relevant to their program funding.

Contractual arrangements for all funded agencies are outlined in the Funding Deed and the Program Level Agreement (PLA).

The contracting portal provides agencies with direct access to their funding and contracting information. The portal allows agencies to view information, respond to requests and upload material online.

The Funding Policy for funded agencies is under revision. Any enquiries in relation to this policy should be directed to Grants.ProgramManager@facs.nsw.gov.au.

Agency governance

All funded agencies must comply with FACS contract governance requirements. Agencies should also familiarise themselves with FACS fraud control plan. FACS uses the National standard chart of accounts for financial documentation with its funded agencies.

Child wellbeing

Besides meeting contracting requirements with FACS, all funded agencies and their staff must be aware of their child protection responsibilities. The Child Wellbeing and Child Protection – NSW Interagency Guidelines is the key document for providing practical guidance on interagency collaboration in child protection.

Agencies should implement child safe policies and must ensure they comply with Working with Children Check requirements.

The Care and Protection Practice Framework assists agencies to clarify the knowledge and skills FACS requires for good casework practice.

Funded agencies are encouraged to use FACS resources for working with Aboriginal people and communities and its Multicultural Strategic Commitment. The Supporting victims of crime guidelines, Supporting victims of Crime: Information for OOHC NGO caseworkers factsheet, and Working with victims of crime eLearning module provide assistance to NGO OOHC service providers in understanding and meeting their responsibilities towards victims of crime.

OOHC Health Screening and Assessment Pathway  

The OOHC Health Pathway is a joint initiative of Family and Community Services (FACS) and NSW Health aimed to ensure that every child or young person entering statutory out-of-home care (OOHC) receives timely and appropriate health screening, assessment, intervention, monitoring and review of their health needs. 

FACS and NGO caseworkers play an essential role in improving the health and wellbeing of children and young people in OOHC by supporting the Health Pathway process. Upon a child or young person entering OOHC, FACS initiates the Health Pathway process by referring the child or young person to the local OOHC Health Coordinator. The OOHC Health Pathways: a caseworker’s guide is available to support FACS and NGO staff through the Health Pathway process.

The OOHC Health Pathways: carer’s guide is also available to support FACS and NGO carers through the Health Pathway process.

Agencies can contact their local Community Services Centre for more information.

Consent to Medical and Dental treatment

The Medical and Dental Consent Tool clarifies who has authority to give medical and dental consent on behalf of children and young people in statutory out-of-home care, residing in either FACS or non-government organisation (NGO) managed foster placements. The Tool provides a guide for NSW Health, NGO and FACS staff to expedite consent procedures and ensure children and young people in statutory care receive timely medical and dental treatment.

This fact sheet on provides an overview of who has authority for providing consent for medical and dental treatments on behalf of children and young people in out-of-home care (OOHC), for whom the Minister for Family and Community Services (FACS) holds parental responsibility and who are being cared for by an authorised carer.

Fee-free training for children and young people in out-of-home care

Children and young people aged 15 – 17 in out-of-home care (OOHC) and young people aged 18 – 30 who have previously been in OOHC are now eligible for Smart and Skilled Fee-Free Scholarships.

The scholarships will be in place for four years and people who meet the Smart and Skilled Fee-Free Scholarship eligibility criteria will be able to choose from more than 580 qualifications from Certificate I to Advanced Diplomas, including apprenticeships and traineeships.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for a Fee-Free Scholarship, students must be:

  • 15 years old or over, no longer at school, living or working in NSW
  • aged between 15 and 30 years old when they start training
  • an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, Australian permanent humanitarian visa holder or New Zealand citizen
  • wanting to study a Smart and Skilled course listed on the NSW Skills List or on the NSW Skills List Additions.

For further information

FACTSHEET: Fee-free training for children and young people in out-of-home care

To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (24 hours/7 days)