Together with our founding partners, our growing, international non-profit foundation has already made a significant impact on the path to raising public awareness, protecting children in families at risk of harm and changing how the world views the entire issue of family separation. Here, you’ll find news of our activities and some of the achievements that have resulted directly from our work.
International TV campaign
In December 2020, we shot our first advertisement for international television and cinema. We will be launching the completed ad on international TV and social media in July 2021as the first step in our international TV campaign, targeting specific behaviours and issues that contribute to harm to children in vulnerable, separating families.
May 2021 sees the launch of a new international alliance of child-focused organisations from Australia to the UK. Two Wishes, along with a number of international partners, will also be simultaneously launching a new initiative to highlight the roles and responsibilities of parents.
Family Health Ratings scheme
In June 2021, we will be launching our Family Health Ratings scheme. Modelled, in part, on Australia’s Health Star Ratings for food, our Family Health Ratings provide an indication of the health impacts on families of different institutions, approaches, providers and schemes. Each is assessed by a panel comprising representatives from at least five of our Advisory Boards and may vary over time as changes to each scheme are made.
Two Wishes Festival
Bringing a focus on powerful and high quality art and media productions that explore themes relating to “family”, the Two Wishes Art and Media Festival will be launched in September 2021, with all submissions and entries to be finalised by 31 December. A jury of arts professionals, including members of the Two Wishes team, will judge entries in multiple categories. The winners of the inaugural Festival will be announced at the end of January 2022.
International TV series
Production has begun on a major, new TV series addressing the issue of family breakdown in a lively, entertaining way. With young presenters on three continents, a world-class production team, and pre-existing interest from public service broadcasters around the world, this series is due for international release in 2023-4.
Development of comprehensive policy platform
We have developed a comprehensive, inclusive policy platform and model for how family breakdown should look in future, and how it could look today. By treating this as an urgent, health issue, instead of primarily a legal issue, we refocus attention on what’s really best for children’s long-term wellbeing. This inevitably means a shift from too-late, legal interventions to pre-emptive education and support and much earlier interventions when needed.
1 January 2021: Launch of Two Wishes website, a comprehensive international resource for policy-makers, campaigners, families and young people that highlights evidence and solutions for some of our most vulnerable families.
Major parliamentary inquiry
Every fortnight in Australia, a child is killed by a parent or close family member. Statistics for many other countries are equally frightening. Our work has triggered an unprecedented parliamentary inquiry in Western Australia, due to begin after the March 2021 State election, into the potential links between family court proceedings and the murder of children by parents or close family members – an inquiry that would have been unthinkable just one year ago.
Australian social impact campaign
The first of our national, public awareness campaigns, in Australia, has already reached over 3 million people, more than 10% of the entire population. We have generated multiple stories on prime-time TV news on all major Australian networks; multiple radio stories on the ABC, the national broadcaster, and commercial radio; and prominent, print media coverage in many, leading Australian newspapers, including front-page news, editorials, opinion pieces and numerous, published letters to the editor.
A Minister for Children
Australia had never before had a national Minister for Children. But, back in 2017, we began lobbying the Australian federal Parliament to create one. It was an essential step, we argued, towards getting pro-active, child-focused policies, instead of too many reactive, too-late interventions. We met with 25% of all politicians from the Senate and House of Representatives and made this a feature of our 2017 Policy launch. On 20 December, 2017, the then-Turnbull Government announced Australia’s first Minister for Children and Families.
Successful Australian Senate Motion
We wrote and triggered a successful Motion in the Australian Senate that called on the Australian government to recognise that “thousands of children are being harmed by the current family law system” and to initiate a major “root and branch” review. This review has now taken place. It was conducted by the Australian Law Reform Commission and released its final report in 2019.