Abstract Submission

Thank you for your Abstract submissions

Abstracts for the 2024 ACWA Conference are now closed. 

We thank all applicants for their time and effort in preparing a submission. 

Partnership and collaboration

  • Demonstrating leadership in progressing the transfer of Aboriginal children to ACCOs
  • Effective place-based collaboration
  • Achieving service system reform in local communities
  • Successful community engagement and participation (communities of practice as well as geographically based community-led initiatives)

Prevention, early intervention and family preservation

  • Prevention: Innovative evidence-based programs, practice initiatives, services and implementation methods
  • Effectively engaging with parents
  • Prevention and early intervention – challenges, opportunities and outcomes
  • Early childhood service and health interventions
  • Addressing poverty, disadvantage and social isolation
  • Family preservation, family support (including parent-led initiatives)

Aboriginal children, families and communities (This core stream will be designed and developed in the program by representatives from AbSec, once abstracts are received).

  • Aboriginal child and family wellbeing
  • Aboriginal participation in decision making
  • Transfer of Aboriginal children to the ACCO sector
  • Culturally-informed practice and cultural support planning – in early intervention, family preservation, out of home care and reunification
  • Implementing the Aboriginal Child Placement Principle

Domestic and family violence

  • Practices and Interventions with children and families in circumstances of domestic violence
  • Early identification of domestic and family violence
  • Approaches to identifying the impact of domestic and family violence on children and responding to their developing needs
  • Multi agency collaborative interventions

Child maltreatment

  • Prevention of child abuse and neglect
  • Decision making for child safety – frameworks and tools
  • Public health approaches
  • Poverty and disadvantage and the intersection with maltreatment

Out of home care and the permanency continuum

  • Challenges and responses: Kinship care, Foster care and Residential care
  • Achieving better outcomes for children in care – health, education, wellbeing, family relationships, belonging and identity
  • Developing and maintaining cultural connections and identity
  • Reunification decision making and outcomes
  • Effectively engaging with birth parents and carers
  • Leaving care planning and after care
  • Children’s Court practice
  • Adoption practice and outcomes, post-adoption support
  • Guardianship: Decision making and learnings from practice

Promoting the legal rights of children and young people

  • Best practice approaches in promoting children’s rights and wellbeing
  • Balancing the needs of children with supporting families
  • Children’s agency and participation
  • Child advocacy and access to justice
  • Support systems for children and young people in legal proceedings
  • Support and advocacy for particularly vulnerable groups of children – including children with disability, newly arrived refugees.

Cross Cutting Issues

Speakers are encouraged to address in presentations, workshops and symposia any of the following cross cutting themes as relevant to the topic of their submission.

Organisations – innovation, leadership, change

    • Program planning
    • Teamwork
    • Cross agency and inter-professional collaboration
    • Workforce challenges – responding to legislative and policy change
    • Training and supervision- stress, burnout, retention
    • Child safe organisations and regulatory frameworks
    • Program specialisation for permanency outcomes
    • Leadership

Evidence, Research, policy and practice and outcomes

    • Evidence based practice/policy/programs
    • Communicating research to inform policy and practice
    • Policy development
    • Evaluation and outcome measurement
    • Implementation science and practice
    • New IT technologies and child safety and wellbeing practice
    • Ethical issues in practice/research
    • Strengths based practice
    • Trauma informed practice
    • Family inclusive practice
    • Cross cultural and culture sensitive practice

Tips for writing your conference presentation proposal

Your topic should:

  • Be relevant to the conference Core Stream selected (check above).
  • Be concerned with original work, innovative new programs, new research, analysis of policy or training initiatives

In your presentation you need to go beyond just the description of the program or policy. You should provide an analysis and discuss the outcomes and implications for future directions. This might include policy development, changed practice, further research or new sector directions.

People listening to your presentation want to know how it might apply to their work or to wider sector outcomes. Making this clear is important.

There are guidelines for your abstract listed in the tabs below. Work through these one dot point at a time to make sure that you have covered everything. We don’t want to see these as headings in your proposal, but if you use this to guide your abstract you are more likely to cover the information that the Committee is looking for.

The marking criteria for your proposal is:

  • Relevance to the sector and to the conference Core Streams/Sub Themes
  • Technical merit (clarity of methodology, program elements, practice arguments, accuracy of data/claims, conclusions drawn).
  • Originality (original focus, innovative ideas, new method/approach, advancement of the field).
  • Symposia/Panel presentations and Workshops: The abstract should contain an overview of the session and brief description of each panelists’ presentation, including bios of co authors/co presenters.


The Association of Children’s Welfare Agencies (ACWA) 2024 Conference Scientific Program Committee invites the submission of abstracts for original work, for consideration as an oral individual presentation, workshop, symposia/panel presentation or poster presentation, in the Association of Children’s Welfare Agencies 2024 Conference program. Authors must select one of the above following core streams that their abstract relates to.

Abstracts Open 4 August 2023
Deadline for Receipt of Abstract 6 December 2023
Authors Notified of Acceptance 5 February 2024
Author Acceptance  28 February 2024
Author Registration 28 March 2024

Guidelines for submission of Abstracts

Oral Individual and Poster Presentations

Abstract length 400 – 500 words.

The abstract should include presenting author name, affiliation, contact details of author/co-authors, preferred presentation format (Oral or Poster) and nominated Core stream/sub theme.

Abstracts must adhere to the following format:

  • Thematic relevance: Relevance of the submission to the chosen Core stream /sub themes of the conference
  • Background and objectives: outline the central issue and objective sought to be achieved, elaborate on the research or policy or practice intervention or program initiative to be presented.
  • Methods/components: if research or evaluation indicate design, data, analysis; if policy or program initiative provide details of elements, implementation, targeted service users.
  • Results/outcomes: Summarise key findings of research; policy or programme outcomes.
  • Implications: Way forward in terms of practice implications, lessons learned, future policy/program development, future research.


Abstract length 600 words

  • Thematic relevance: The workshop should be relevant to the chosen Core stream /sub themes of the conference.
  • Background and objectives: outline the central focus, objectives sought to be achieved and target audience.
  • Specify the content, mode of delivery and learning outcomes.
  • Abstract should include brief bio and contact details of the workshop presenter/co presenter/s

Symposia/Panel presentations

Abstract length 600-800 words

  • Thematic relevance: The symposium/panel should be relevant to the chosen Core stream/sub themes of the conference.
  • Proposals for symposia/panels may have up to 4 panellists in addition to the chair.
  • Abstract should contain a brief overview of the session- central issue and objective sought to be achieved (200 words) and a description of each participant’s presentation on the topic (100 words each)
  • Abstract should include brief bio of the chair and participants (50 words each)

Submissions on all core streams and sub themes may focus on practice or policy or program development or research or a combination of any of these.

Notifications of acceptance will be sent via e-mail to the submitting author on 12 January 2024.

Accepted abstracts will be available within the Conference App. The Conference Managers will not be held responsible for abstract submissions not received via the website or for submission errors caused by internet service outages, hardware or software delays, power outages or unforeseen events.

The presenting author(s) will be required to register for the Conference in order to ensure their abstract(s) is included in the final program. Deadline for Presenting Author registration is 28 March 2024. Failure to do so may result in exclusion from the program.

  • All abstracts must be original work. An abstract should not be submitted if the work is to be published/presented at a major national or international meeting prior to ACWA 2024.
  • An abstract must contain sufficient information so that if published it will be a complete report independent of presentation. The text should not contain statements alluding to results or conclusions not presented within the text.
  • Submission acknowledges consent to publication of the abstract in the Conference App.
  • The presenting author(s) will be required to register for the Conference in order to ensure their abstract(s) is included in the final programme. Deadline for presenting author registration is
    28 March 2024.
  • All submissions must be completed electronically via the online submission facility. If you are unable to submit in this manner, please contact the Conference Managers at acwaconference@arinexgroup.com or phone: +61 2 9265 0700 for further information.
  • All abstracts must be prepared according to the guidelines provided on the ‘Abstract Template’ tab above. Abstracts will be accepted and published only if submitted using the supplied template.
  • There is no limit to the number of abstracts that may be submitted by an individual.
  • Abstracts must not exceed a 500 word limit for oral individual and poster presentations, 600 word limit for workshops and 800 word limit for symposia/panel presentations. The word limit relates only to the text of the abstract and does not include title, authors and institutions.
  • Formatting is preserved (italics, bold, superscripting, subscripting, underlining) and symbol characters (ie ± , µ, ß) may be used.
  • The abstract should include a brief statement of aims of the presentation, methods of research, results, implications (if focus is on research), or overview of practice or policy developments (if oriented toward practice/policy/program planning), outcomes, conclusions and recommendations.
  • The title must reflect the content of the presentation.
  • Authors and co-authors are requested to provide a short biography (up to 100 words) with their submission.
  • Abstracts must be free of typographical and grammatical errors.
  • Standard abbreviations may be used for common terms only. Any abbreviation should be given in brackets after the first full use of the word. Abbreviations may be used in the title, provided the name in full is outlined in the body of the abstract.
  • Font type must be Tahoma Font 10pt.
  • Use single line spacing.
  • Travel funds will not be available to presenters. Author/s of accepted oral and poster presentations will be entitled to the early bird registration fee.

Authors must prepare their abstract in advance using the template located at the link below. All abstracts will be checked and if you fail to use the template your abstract may be declined. Authors can then upload the completed abstract via the online form.

Download abstract template here.

Submission for ACWA 2024 now closed!