Guiding Principles


Our values.


We want to be led by those with lived experience.
We are informed by felt need and seek to avoid assumptions.
We value and pursue empathy, beyond sympathy.


We know that we are better together and believe everyone has a unique contribution to make.
We pursue service over status and collaboration over competition.
We celebrate diversity and promote inclusion.


We desire and believe in the possibility of restoration and healing for every person and family.
We desire transformational not transactional activity; seeking to go beyond charity, towards justice.
We are strengths-based, not deficit-focused.


We believe that we are biologically and spiritually wired for connection.
We view things holistically and within systems.
We are trauma-informed, in order to not be trauma-inducing.
We prioritise wellbeing and wholeness.


We believe humility and authenticity are essential.
We aim to be well-informed, honest, and trustworthy.
We embrace accountability.
We value kindness.

Guiding principles.

These are the key ideas that reflect our values and beliefs and inform what we do and how we do it.

Best interests of the child

The best interests of the child are paramount, including protecting children from harm.
The family has primary responsibility for the care, upbringing and development of a child and a child should only be removed from family when there is no other reasonable way to safeguard their wellbeing.
 We recognise that family of origin and relationship with birth parents, as well as connection to culture, is an important right for children.

Trauma-informed & strengths-based

We know that understanding the way trauma uniquely impacts children is crucial for providing the best possible responses for their healing and flourishing.
We affirm that every person, created in the image of God, has purpose and potential and should be empowered in their unique circumstance through building on strengths not focusing on deficits.
We value lived experience and diversity, seeking the inclusion, perspective, and guidance of those with a broad range of backgrounds, experiences and gifts, including experiences of the care system, family history, culture, age and relationship status.

Partnership & collaboration

We want to strengthen existing systems, fill gaps and avoid duplication.
We are connectors, pursuing effectiveness through working with all stakeholders.
We have empathy for all people involved in the child protection system, first and foremost children, but also birth families, care families, agencies and the department.

A holistic approach

We take a child-focused and family-centred approach; viewing children within the systems they exist within.
Not everyone is called to foster but we can all do something to those who are. We provide levels of engagement for individuals to care for vulnerable children and families in a range of different ways.

Reconciliation & restoration

We believe in, endorse, and seek to demonstrate a theology and philosophy of grace, restoration, reconciliation and reunification, for every person, particularly those with an experience of the out-of-home care system.
We know that relationship and connection are key; harm done in relationship is only healed in relationship.
We have a grounded hope, holding the tension between hard realities and positive possibilities.

Theological foundations.

Engaging in the Out-of-Home Care space can be complex, challenging, and full of both joy and pain. Far beyond good intentions, wishful thinking, or any quick fix solutions, a sturdy theology is needed to inspire, inform, outwork, and sustain our efforts to serve children and families.

Click below to read a summary of some key theological ideas that relate to both the motivation for and the design and approach of The Homeward Project.