Working With Troubled Children & Teenagers - Values & Practice


Thanks for your interest in my upcoming book!

For ages, I’ve wanted to write something that captured some of my thinking around how best to help troubled young people. This is it!

Basically, it’s ‘the book of the blog.’

                                  “Our children are the rock on which our future will be built, our greatest asset as a nation”  – Nelson Mandela

Doing a better job for those kids who need our help – that’s my passion. And that’s what this book is about.

I get it!  Let me know updates about the book…



Some of the chapter headings for the book are:

  • Respect – seeing troubled kids through new eyes…
  • Listening – Catherine de Hueck said, ‘With the gift of listening comes healing.’
  • Trust – build this first and everything else will follow on…
  • Boundaries – doing our job to the best of our ability AND staying within the rules
  • Touch – safe touch is essential to good child care. So how do we do it?…

…things that can really make a difference to kids you work with.

What people are saying…

A couple of folk have agreed to review the book. Here’s a taster:

‘Fasten your seatbelts; this is one heck of a read. As a practitioner in the field of youth work and psychotherapy for more years than I care to remember,  I believe that this book is definitely essential reading for anyone working with troubled young people. The pages are full of the wisdom, insight and compassion that can only come from years of frontline work, personal reflection and indeed sleepless nights.  Jonny Matthew knows what he is talking about….but more than that this book is a genuine testimony to the power and transformative impact of empathy and the presence of  ‘one good adult’  in the life of a young person.   The honesty, humour and at times vulnerability of the author will challenge you to inquire into your own work practice, your attitudes and values.   Allow yourself to embody the richness and sensitivity of this powerful book and you too will experience nurturing, support and renewed energy for your work.’    (Brian Johnston, Director, Candle Youth Services, Dublin, Republic of Ireland)

‘Working with troubled children and teenagers’ will be a fantastic resource for those people who are doing just that for very low wages in thousands of settings every day.  Easy to read and written in a chatty style, the book feels like having a conversation with someone who has spent their life working with young people who are in hard places.  Jonny has and still is doing that work, and in this book he has distilled the things he has learnt about the importance of good relationship based work, into short, easily understood messages.  

‘If this book gets into the hands of the people at the coal face it will make a huge difference to the lives of troubled youngsters.  I’d like to see it become a compulsory text for youth workers, teaching assistants, support workers and anyone else working directly with children and young people.’ (Ann Bell, CEO Adoption UK)

Spreading the word…

I’d be very grateful for your help in getting the word out about it. I want as many people as possible to read the book – that way, more children will be impacted for the better.

If you’re up for helping me spread the word, just click the link below and leave me your email address.

YES!  I’m up for spreading the word about this…

If you know someone else who might be interested, please let them know. You could just copy this link and send it on to them:

May 2018…

Image courtesy of ©️JKP

Jessica Kingsley Publishers have kindly offered to publish my book.

They reckon it will be out around 21st May 2018.

I’ll keep you posted as things unfold.

I have completed the main draft of the book and am now dealing with the first proofs – so it’s coming together nicely!

Once again, THANKS for your interest in it. Please leave me your email so I can get in touch with news as things progress.

Yes please!  Keep me in the loop with book news…





(p.s. here’s that link one more time, just in case you missed it!  :0)


Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Mollie Williams

    Hi Jonny Congratulations on your book. I look forward to reading it.

    • jonnymatthew

      Thanks very much, Mollie – I’m excited about it! :0)