Sunshine Coast


Parenting Orders Program - Sunshine Coast

15/08/2014 | Fact sheets


Parenting Orders Program


What is the Parenting Orders Program?

 The Parenting Orders Program (POP) is a program developed under the Family Law Act.  It helps separated parents or carers learn how parental conflict affects children.  Children need parents to be supportive of their relationship with the other parent.  This program helps parents focus on the needs of the children, instead of conflict.   POP offers support in managing cooperative parenting arrangements for separated parents, carers and extended family.  Clients can attend voluntarily or be mandated by the Federal Circuit Court of Australia or the Family Court.


 Who can go to a Parenting Orders Program?

 Separated parents or those contemplating separation, carers and extended family who are not talking, who are unable to communicate without conflict or who need support in managing cooperative parenting arrangements may go to a POP.  The Intake worker will arrange for parents to attend at separate times so they do not have to meet.  This program is aimed at both parents individually and is helpful even if only one parent attends.


 What happens at a Parenting Orders Program?


 -       Individual assessment

 -       Educational group sessions (morning and/or evening)

 -       Counselling and Individual support

 -       Certificate of attendance

 -       Referrals to other programs and/or other care providers if needed


 Seasons for Growth program

 The Sunshine Coast Parenting Orders Program also offers support to Children. Seasons for Growth is a grief and loss education program which aims to promote the

social and emotional wellbeing of children and young people (aged 6-18 years) who have experienced significant change in their lives, usually as a result of death, separation or divorce. You can talk to your POP consultant about your children attending this program.

Making Stepfamilies Work

 The Sunshine Coast Parenting Orders Program also offers support to couples either in a stepfamily, or considering forming one.  It covers central issues faced by stepfamilies, including past histories, disciplining children and divided loyalties.  An emphasis is placed on strengthening the couple relationship.  Topics include:


  • Influences from the past
  • Living with someone else’s children
  • The discipline challenge
  • New roles
  • Strengthening the couple relationship


 Is what I say at a Parenting Orders Program confidential?

 Under the Family Law Act anything said by a person attending a POP cannot be used as evidence in any court.  However, a service must report abuse, or a risk of abuse to the authorities and this may be used as evidence in some circumstances.


Information provided by you will be handled with care and discretion at all times.



 The Parenting Orders Program is free of charge.


 If you also attend one of our Family Dispute Resolution Services, we will provide your Initial Assessment session free of charge.  Following this Family Dispute Resolution sessions are charged according to your yearly income and ability to pay.  Fees for Family Dispute Resolution will be discussed with you if your circumstances lead to a referral for this service.



 Information disclosed to counsellors will not be released to anyone without written consent.  However, we are required by law to disclose information when there is a risk of harm.  Should this arise, counsellors will make every attempt to contact clients beforehand.


 Your rights as a client

 You will be treated with respect and understanding by all staff members.


        Your privacy and confidentiality will be respected.

 -       You are free to consent or withdraw from the service at any time.

 -       You are assured services by suitably qualified staff.

 -       You are free to refuse invitations to participate in research.

 -       You have the right to participate in planning and decision-making when addressing your issues.


 Compliments and Complaints

 If you have any feedback about our services, please tell us.  You have right to have your potential concerns investigated fairly.  Our feedback process is outlined publicly in each of our reception areas.  We take all comments and complaints seriously.


 Contact Details – Sunshine Coast Family Relationships Centre

 Address: 43-45 Primary School Court, Maroochydore, Qld 4558

 Phone: 5452 9700                 Email:


 Contact Details – UnitingCare Community – Gympie

 Address:  35 Excelsior Road, Gympie, Qld 4570

 Phone:  5480 3400              Email:



Families, Mediation/Family Dispute Resolution, Support Services
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