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Centacare expands southern footprint


Centacare’s metropolitan footprint has expanded in the south with the opening of a new site last month at Colonnades Shopping Centre.

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Home to Breathing Space and RESTORE Intensive Family Services – South, the space aims to strengthen connections with families and the services we work with to support them.

‘’The clients live in this community, so to be present in community, with the families and young women we walk alongside and support is significant,’’ said Amalie Mannik, executive manager of Children’s Services.

‘’Cutting down travel time to go to clients’ homes has meant we are able to reinvest that time back into families, which is where it should be.’’

Twenty staff previously based at Seaton now operate from Commonwealth House, located near key stakeholders in child protection, human services, housing, education and employment.

‘’Building stronger relationships with our southern stakeholders and community services ensures stronger pathways for referrals and better client outcomes,’’ Amalie said.

Executive director Leanne Haddad said the site was “turning hope into opportunities’’ in families facing complex challenges.

‘’The multidisciplinary programs that rest here are quite groundbreaking,’’ she said.

‘’Few programs in South Australia bring together social workers, clinical nurses, men’s and fatherhood workers, and financial counsellors – that wealth of knowledge which makes a difference to families beyond the mandate.’’

RESTORE South supports families with children at imminent risk of entering care through intensive in-home and community-based supports, with a focus on building parenting capacity to improve family functioning and child safety.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Breathing Space works with women aged under 25 years who have experienced removal of a child or children from their care and are therefore at heightened risk of recurrent removal in the future.

Collectively, RESTORE and Breathing Space supported 933 clients in 2021-2022, including 556 children.

A feature of the new Centacare site is an artwork by Ngarrindjeri artist Lyn Lovegrove Niemz.

Titled ‘Life of the Onkaparinga River’, the acrylic painting on canvas hangs in the entranceway and depicts Centacare as a central source of family connection and supports.

Lyn, a former Aboriginal support worker at Centacare, said the painting was inspired by the “life force” of the waterway. She hoped it would bring a sense of comfort and welcome to clients engaged with services at Noarlunga Centre.

“For Aboriginal people, it can be quite intimidating to walk into an organisation,” she said.

“Discrimination is out there but because of how society is today, it’s often hidden away.

“Art can give someone a sense of acceptance because they feel welcome in that place.”

For more information about how to access services, phone the southern team on 8303 6600 or email



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