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For professionals

An independent evaluation of the Mums and Kids Matter (MaKM) Program commissioned by Mental Health Branch was conducted by Nous in 2016. A review of 9 programs with similar components indicated that there is no other program operating in Australia or indeed internationally, that offers the combination of program components delivered by MaKM.

Referral criteria

If you’re looking to make a referral to the program, please review the criteria below.

To be eligible for Mums and Kids Matter, a mother must:

  • be a current client of a NSW public mental health service
  • be a mother aged 16 or over with a mental illness
  • have capacity to live independently and care for the child
  • have the capacity to provide informed consent to participate in the program
  • be assessed to have low- medium psychosocial needs based on Mums and Kids Matter complexity classification
  • abstain from drugs and/or alcohol for a period of at least four (4) weeks prior to program entry.

Residential stays are available for mothers and their children who are less than five (5) years of age.  Community support is available for mothers and their young children (0–5 years) who may also have older children living with them.

Residential client acceptance criteria will be considered in order of priority.

Priority referral is given if a mother:

  • at risk of post-natal depression
  • needs parenting support and psychosocial interventions
  • lacks family and community support to parent safely
  • is at risk of homelessness.

The following exclusions apply if a mother has:

  • no legal parental responsibility and no current restoration plan and does not have full access to the children for the duration of the program
  • no children aged 0–5 years.

State-wide referrals can only be accepted from NSW public mental health services.

To make a referral, please download and complete the referral and consent forms before sending them along with all relevant documentation to

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