MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ is an innovative way to structure the support and supervision provided to foster and kinship carers to create caring homes, inclusive of family, culture and community.

An evidence informed, community based approach to foster care.

Life Without Barriers is partnering with The Mockingbird Society to implement MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ in Australia. 

The approach, which was first developed in 2004 in Washington State, USA, has been designed to improve connections and social and emotional well-being of children and their carers. As a result of the positive outcomes experienced in the USA, MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ has been implemented in the UK, Canada, Japan, Netherlands and in NSW, SA & VIC of Australia. 

Key benefits of MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ are: 

  • Children thrive socially, emotionally and academically 

  • Children and carers develop supportive peer relationships 

  • Carer retention 

  • Carers receive support through respite, peer support, training and information 

  • Children remain connected to their community and culture 

  • Increased placement stability 

  • Alleviate case management workload 

"Twice now, I’ve experienced challenging placements that made me question whether to continue fostering. The first time, I was not part of a Constellation and I had to take a break from providing care. The second time, I had the support of the Constellation and it made all the difference. There is nothing more supportive for foster carers and families.” 

MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ CARER

MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ unites 6 to 10 carer homes (Satellite Families) in a local community. This is referred to as a Constellation and is supported by an experienced carer, who takes on the role of the Hub Home Provider.

How it works?

MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ unites 6 to 10 carer homes (Satellite Families) in a local community. This is referred to as a Constellation, and is supported by an experienced carer, who takes on the role of the Hub Home Provider. The Hub Home Provider is an employed team member who supports carers through providing connection, information, training and emotional support.

The Constellation is like the extended family and the Hub Home is like a grandparent’s house that is familiar and comfortable. Each child in the Constellation is welcomed by the Hub Home Provider for sleep overs and social events, or if there is difficulty at home and the child and/or carers could benefit for a break.

MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ also promotes ongoing meaningful relationships with parents, brothers and sisters and other family members.

Hub Home Providers

The Hub Home Provider:

1. Coordinates and supports Satellite Families in the Constellation through planned and crisis respite care, peer support, problem solving, mentoring, transport or activities to help children have fun and learn new skills.

2. Unites the Satellite Families into a social network that works like a micro-community that provides a safe secure environment for children and young people to connect with their peers, caring adults and keeps them connected to their family and culture. This community and peer connection also helps to retain quality carers who work together to support children and young people to achieve their goals.

This supportive community provides children with a more positive experience of care.

Got more questions? Get in touch today

If you would like to speak to one of our team about the MOCKINGBIRD FAMILY™ approach or safeguarding practice, please get in touch below.