Professor Sanders has been officially recognised for his work to improve the lives of families and children through his work as a researcher, clinician, teacher and international positive parenting advocate.
Professor Sanders said he felt very honoured, surprised and humbled when he was told he would receive an AO for 'distinguished service of a high degree to Australia or to humanity at large.'
“What’s most important to me about the award is the recognition that evidence based parenting and family support is extremely important to raise children,” Professor Sanders said.
“I believe it’s the single most important thing we can do to promote the health, development and wellbeing of children.
Triple P’s population-health approach originated in the pioneering work of Professor Sanders’ PhD thesis in 1981. Today, though Triple P International’s commercialisation arrangement with the University of Queensland, it’s estimated the program has already helped more than four million children and their families, in more than 25 countries, and this number continues to grow.
The Triple P – Positive Parenting Program (which now includes associated programs such as the Positive Early Childhood Education Program, PECE), is used in a wide variety of countries and cultures and resources are available in 22 languages; new research, program variants and delivery formats continue to place the program at the forefront of parenting and family support.
More than 88,000 practitioners have so far been trained to deliver various Triple P programs to address a broad range of issues, and help parents provide optimal environments for child development.
“The success we have achieved in helping children and families has involved the collective effort of many people, including my research team in the PFSC [Parenting and Family Support Centre, at the University of Queensland] and industry partners Triple P International who all believe in the vision of having quality evidence based parenting support available for all families, everywhere.
“Also the support of my own wife, children and now grandchildren has been crucial.
“I love that I have the opportunity to lead a research team and be part of a research process that makes a difference to people’s everyday lives.”