One of the things we focus on at the Commission is how to make things better for children and young people, particularly young people who live in out-of-home care, youth justice or who are involved with the child protection system. We do this through our inquiries, which let us look at particular issues in detail and make recommendations to the government about how things could be improved.
Through our youth engagement work, we have worked with young people to design our inquiries and to make sure we create opportunities for children and young people to share their experiences with us, as well as their ideas for improvements.
The Commission's In our own words inquiry made recommendations for improving the out-of-home care system in Victoria, based on feedback from children and young people that we gathered through more than 200 conversations with children and young people with a care experience. We worked with young consultants with lived experience of out-of-home care to help us with our questions and design our consultation process.
Our Keep caring inquiry made recommendations for how to improve supports for young people when they are preparing to leave care. Again, we spoke to young people about their experiences and incorporated their suggestions for how to improve the system.
The Commission sometimes also talks to children and young people about other big or significant issues. In 2020, through the stage 4 lockdown in Victoria, the Commission engaged with children and young people across the state, through a survey and many individual and group interviews over zoom to understand how the pandemic was impacting them. We worked alongside our Youth Council to design the questions and to co-facilitate consultations.
We took the information we heard and made some short summaries or snapshots reporting on what we heard:
We have used this information in our conversations with government departments and also talked to the media about what we found.