In late 2020, the Tasmanian Government asked Commissioner McLean to talk with Tasmanian children and young people aged up to 17 years to find out what wellbeing means to them. The Government ashed her to do this to help them develop Tasmania’s first Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy.
Commissioner McLean also spoke with parents and others who care for Tasmanian children aged 4 and under.
One of the results of these consultations is a children’s picture book “When I wake up I smile”, which captures the views on wellbeing of children aged 4-8 years from selected schools who took part in creative workshops with artists. Commissioner McLean asked these artists to help her with the consultations with younger children because she believes it is important that children no matter what their age have a say and let adults know what they think in fun and creative ways.
On 24 May 2021 Commissioner McLean launched the book “When I wake up I smile” together with an education resource that can be used by educators, parents and carers to discuss wellbeing with children. “When I wake up I smile” is not just a picture book – it’s also an incredibly insightful and honest look by Tasmanian children at what they want and need to be happy, healthy and secure and to have the very brightest futures Tasmania can offer them.
On 1 June 2021 Commissioner McLean also released a report to Government, “We call it happy”, which describes what she heard during consultations with more than 400 young Tasmanians and 100 parents and carers of children from around Tasmania.