With the trend towards keeping children with a disability in their families, intervention practices are seeking to ensure child safety. A research project in New South Wales, Australia, aimed to discover whether particular support programme(s) for children with a disability and their families significantly and positively influenced outcomes for the child and family, and if significant positive change did occur, which programme elements, strategies and/or techniques significantly contributed to positive client outcomes. Families in crisis and their support workers participated in the research and were followed and interviewed using quantitative and qualitative methods, at instigation of intervention, immediately post-intervention, at six and at twelve months post-intervention. Measurements of empowerment, emotional support, parent-child involvement, abuse potential, family functioning, symptom reduction, hope, happiness and worker-client alliance were used to gather data, as were qualitative interviews. Analyses indicated that the interventions improved families' levels of well-being and functioning and were significantly successful in reducing child abuse potential. Specific worker strategies and programme elements were found to be associated with these improvements and are discussed in detail. Safety of children with disabilities can be improved significantly using the family-centred interventions that were a distinctive feature of the programmes studied.