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Infant Mental Health Awareness Week Presentation

In June 2023, during Infant Mental Health Awareness Week, I had the honour of co-presenting information for the Australian Association of Infant Mental Health (AAIMH) WA and the North Metropolitan Health Service. The focus of the presentation was Western Australia's pilot Attachment & Biobehavioural Catch-up (ABC) Program, which aligned perfectly with this year's theme of 'Bonding Before Birth.'

The ABC Program, established by Dr. Mary Dozier and her team at the University of Delaware, USA, over 25 years ago, originated from research into the experiences of children in foster care. It is delivered in the home and involves video recording sessions that concentrate on three primary targets. During these sessions, a Parent Coach offers frequent in-the-moment comments to reinforce positive behaviours.

Impressively, the ABC Program has achieved outstanding results and is now being delivered in over 15 countries, including Sweden, Korea, and Australia.

The year-long pilot in WA, funded by the Telethon Foundation & LotteryWest, began in November 2022, as a collaboration between Ngala, Lifespan Psychology Centre, and Pregnancy to Parenthood. Throughout the presentation, we shared compelling case studies of two families who underwent the ABC Program. With their permission, we included video clips that highlighted their transformative journeys.

The attendees found these case studies and videos to be powerful and insightful. Additionally, families who completed the intervention were given the opportunity to participate in the program's evaluation, the results of which will be shared at a later date.

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