What we do

Stand is a charity providing an Intensive Wraparound social service response through: it's Stand for Children service (which includes Therapeutic Care and Education in Children's Villages) to children aged 5 to 12 and their families, it's Family Therapy service for children 0-18 (including unborns) and their families, the Social Services in Schools service and a Kidzacool Adventrures holiday programme for children aged 5 up to 14. 

We work to transform the lives of children and young people who are at significant risk of harm to their wellbeing as a consequence of the environment in which they are being raised and their own complex needs.

For each child we seek to develop their capacity to live in healthy, hopeful relationships with others.  On this depends all of the other necessary outcomes which contribute to their ability to enjoy life and reach their potential.

Our Approach

The daily focus of our work is to protect children from further trauma, support their recovery and enhance their wellbeing.  Three principles underpin our approach:

  • Harm caused by relationships is best healed by relationships.
  • That a child’s home and family, school and teachers, neighbourhood and friends all play a critical role in a child’s world and each system requires attention to improve a child’s quality of life.
  • Transformative environments that provide therapeutic relationships and experiences of belonging, mastery, independence and generosity are quicker and more effective for a child’s journey of recovery. 

These principles are fully supported by recent brain science discoveries and the evidence base of multisystemic therapy and the therapeutic community movement.

Our Services

Our services include our nationwide Stand for Children Service (which is inlcusive of the therapeutic care and education component delivered in our children's villages) therapeutic social work services delivered in home based and school based settings, family therapy, and a holiday programme for caregivers, including grandparents and foster parents. 

Our community and school social workers have many years of experience providing individualised support to children and families who have complex needs and family structures.

Programmes provided by Stand Children’s Services include Family Development Programmes such as Te Puawai, Keeping the Magic Going, Stepping Out, Family Friends, and Family Return on Investment (Family ROI). 

Programmes for children and young people include our Therapeutic Care and Education (children's villages), KidzaCool Adventures, Theraplay, Sunshine Circles, Circle of Courage, Seasons for Growth, Storm Birds, Journey of Hope and a variety of other programmes that address the individual health, education and social needs of children.

We know that some of the children referred to us today will not successfully recover without a planned and consistent therapeutic environment.  They need to experience profound healing relationships, and see that everyone is working together to get to the heart of their difficulties in the context of everyday life, school and community.  Our Children’s Villages provide this transformative experience.

Planned environments like our Children’s Villages are often referred to as ‘therapeutic communities’.  In our Children’s Villages we strive to operate a model based on the principles of therapeutic community life where the care culture is intrinsically linked with the education culture.  The provision of effective psycho-social support and therapeutic education requires that our community and residential social workers and teachers plan and work closely together in an integrated model of therapeutic intervention. 

Stand Children's Services is committed to continuing to provide therapeutic residential care and education component of our service and we continue to work hard to ensure this model of therapeutic intervention is safe, effective and sustainable. 

In 2012, Stand Children's Services provided more than 110,000 hours of social work in the community and had 76 social workers in schools around New Zealand.  Over 4,700 children and their families were helped by Stand Children's Services.


Stand Children’s Services are designed to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Children Remain in their Home and School
  • Improved Family Functioning & Child Health
  • Improved Mental Health
  • Improved Child and Family Social Problem Solving
  • Reduced Antisocial and At-Risk Behaviour
  • Improved School Readiness and Cognitive Abilities

Alongside the short term outcomes for those participating directly in the service, the costs can also be regarded as an investment in longer term outcomes that contribute to a more stable and strong society - including fewer children in state care, improved educational achievement and employment outcomes, and a reduction in family violence, abuse and neglect of children, youth crime involvement and drug/alcohol abuse. 

The concept of “Village” underpins our practice.  Members of the village include children and young people, parents, their school, community social workers, our therapeutic care and education teams, school social workers and other services and agencies involved with the child and family.  Each child and family brings their own unique knowledge and skills to the journey of healing, recovery and re-connection to each other, to their school and to their community. 

Stand Children's Services serves the child and family as a supportive partner in the process of:

  • assessing needs and strengths
  • regaining hope and motivation
  • developing insight and aspirations
  • making plans, and
  • achieving dreams

Participation in Stand Children’s Services is voluntary and referred children and families are accepted only if they agree to full involvement in the service and programmes.

Of course, we never forget that fun is an important part of our work with children. The aim is for each child and their family to achieve their agreed goals and graduate successfully from their programmes confident in their ability to sustain the positive changes they have made.

Monitoring and Evaluation

Stand Children’s Services collates and analyses a range of qualitative and quantitative information about progress and outcomes relating to our services.

The quantitative measures include:

  • Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire scores – baseline and outcome: referrer, parent and child.
  • Adult/Adolescent Parenting Inventory (2) – baseline and outcome: parent/s.
  • McMasters Family Functioning - baseline and outcome: family

The qualitative measures include:

  • Surveys & Interviews: referrer, parent/carers and child.
  • Goals of individual programmes and mentoring.
  • Documented supervision sessions, programme and mentoring session plans and reviews.

All tests are conducted pre-intervention and post-intervention as well as conducted for progress checks during the service journey where approriate.

To learn more about these tools go to:

SDQ - www.sdqinfo.org

AAPI - www.assessingparenting.com