Involving children in decisions

Where we go wrong and how to do it better...

Following our recent mini-series on handing disclosures, reader and social worker Ben Tomlinson shared the findings of his research into the involvement of children in decision-making.

Images courtesy ©️123rf/IKO & Mikhail Malyugin

Here’s what he found…

Over to you, Ben:

Continue Reading »

The State of Foster Care

Fostering Network's 2016 report...

I’m a passionate believer in the value of foster care.

In fact I think it’s the Gold Standard for helping troubled kids who can’t live at home.

Image courtesy of ©123rf/Kateryna Davydenko

So what sort of state is the nation’s fostering system currently in?

So, how’s fostering doing?…

Continue Reading »

For the love of statistics!

How data-gathering undermines the work...

In my view, agency (& government) obsession with data-gathering has gone too far.

The method is wrong, the emphasis is wrong, the outcomes are wrong. So what’s to be done?

Image courtesy of ©123rf/sellingpix (adapted)

Image courtesy of ©123rf/sellingpix (adapted)

How numbers are replacing people…

Continue Reading »

How to promote good mental health…

...in Looked After Children...

Life can be tough. Particularly for kids in the care system.

The very fact of being in care means life has already been very tough!

Image courtesy ©123rf/Jacqueline Moore (adapted)

Image courtesy ©123rf/Jacqueline Moore (adapted)

Aside of meeting children’s physical needs for a place to live, there are the huge needs that spring from family separation and a poor start in life. So…

How do we promote good mental health for Looked After kids?…

Continue Reading »

Why foster carers should have all the info on each child they look after…

Surely foster carers know everything they need to know before a child comes to live with them… Don’t they?

Well, no. Not always.

Photo courtesy of ©123rf/Oleksandr Nebrat (adapted)

Photo courtesy of ©123rf/Oleksandr Nebrat (adapted)

In fact, quite often they are not told key things that relate to safety.

Why we should come clean with foster carers…

Continue Reading »

Nature or nurture? Finding balance…

At family gatherings, in the pub, chatting with friends – sooner or later it’ll come up: are we the product of nature of nurture?

Image courtesy of ©123rf/pixelbliss (adapted)

Image courtesy of ©123rf/pixelbliss (adapted)

We all have a tendency towards one or the other. But do we really have to choose?

How to re-balance the nature/nurture equation…

Continue Reading »

Teens who give back – what to do when a young person offers you a gift…

The Christmas rush has begun – ludicrously early, in my view, but it’s definitely underway!

Photo courtesy of ©123RF/Koosen

Photo courtesy of ©123RF/Koosen

So, as our minds turn to buying Christmas presents, I was put in mind of a dilemma that occurs when young people try to give us something back…

What to do when a young person offers you a gift…

Continue Reading »

Left outside – when Dad or Mum goes to prison…

A parent going to prison isn’t the fault of the child. Obviously. Yet thousands of children suffer as a result…

Father & child holding hands through bars...

Photo courtesy ©iStockphoto/patanasak

Imagine coming home from school to find that Dad or Mum have gone to jail. This is the reality for around 230,000 children in the UK.

So what needs do these children have?…

Continue Reading »

Speech, language & communication problems in youth justice…

Many young people in the youth justice system have speech, language and communication problems. To help them, we need to discover which ones have and which ones haven’t. That’s where “The Box” comes in…

The Box

Image ©RCSLT

This is a guest post by Dr. Aprilmay Kitchener of Siarad Da – supporting professionals to improve their understanding and skills to better manage people with challenging behaviour and social communication difficulties and disabilities.

“The Box” – help or hinderance?…

Continue Reading »