Office of the Children's Guardian
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Who we are

The Office of the Children’s Guardian was established under the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 to promote the interests and rights of children and young people living in out-of-home care.

In 2013 legislative changes expanded the role of the Office to be an independent government agency that works to protect children by promoting and regulating quality, child safe organisations and services.

The Office reports to the NSW Minister for Family and Community Services and to Parliament.

Under our legislation, the Office of the Children’s Guardian:

  • accredits and monitors the designated agencies that arrange statutory out‑of‑home care in NSW
  • maintains and monitors the NSW Carers Register, a centralised database of people who are authorised, or who apply for authorisation, to provide statutory or supported out-of-home care
  • registers and monitors agencies that provide, arrange or supervise voluntary out‑of‑home care 
  • accredits non‑government adoption services providers
  • authorises the employment of children under the age of 15, and child models under the age of 16, in the entertainment sector
  • administers the Working With Children Check and encourages organisations to be safe for children
  • administers the Child Sex Offender Counsellor Accreditation Scheme – a voluntary accreditation scheme for persons working with those who have committed sexual offences against children.

Need help?

The Office of the Children’s Guardian works to improve the protection of children in NSW by helping organisations, employers and individuals understand the meaning, importance and benefits of being child‑safe.

However, it does not deal directly with complaints or concerns of individual children.

For complaints or concerns about an individual child, contact:

NSW Ombudsman
Phone: 02 9286 1000

To report suspected child abuse or neglect contact the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (TTY 1800 212 936) for the cost of a local call, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Children and young people in need of help can contact the Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800 (toll free).