Family Strengths and Needs Assessment

DCJ is planning to introduce the Family Strengths and Needs Assessment (FSNA) approach to the NSW child protection system. The FSNA is used to identify a family’s strengths that will help them to keep a child safe. It supports the creation of strong Family Action Plans for Change, by better understanding a child and family’s needs.

Changes to make better decisions for children

The changes will:

  • identify strengths and needs by looking at risk and safety of the child
  • support family, community and networks to participate in the FSNA to develop a case plan in partnership with the family
  • facilitate putting the right help in place for families, based on evidence and need for a child, caregivers, and family.


  • The first meeting of the FSNA stakeholder group was in early December 2022.
  • Focus groups with stakeholders have started in 2023. Learn more about the consultation process.
  • Consultation continues and work has commenced on the design to determine policy, tool, and practice changes.
Last updated:

28 Aug 2023

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Informed by lessons of the past, Department of Communities and Justice is improving how we work with Aboriginal people and communities. We listen and learn from the knowledge, strength and resilience of Stolen Generations Survivors, Aboriginal Elders and Aboriginal communities.

You can access our apology to the Stolen Generations.

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