Merrywood House

For boys and girls aged 10–17

Merrywood House is a residential therapeutic community providing specialist care and treatment for a group of up to 8 young people aged 10-17.

The home occupies a fine, spacious property with a large garden, situated in a rural village north-west of Norwich.  The home is half a mile down the lane from our Norfolk home for younger children, Earthsea House, which allows a strong feeling of a Childhood First community.

Merrywood House provides therapeutic care, treatment and education, and specialises in the treatment of young people who present severe emotional and behavioural problems, including sexualised behaviour, as a result of attachment difficulties usually rooted in early life trauma.

Through the use of our unique and effective Integrated Systemic Therapy, which focuses on healing trauma and enabling healthy attachments and relationships, young people can achieve exceptional outcomes in every aspect of their lives.

All Childhood First care and education staff are therapeutically trained to enable children and young people to work through their experiences of past trauma in a safe and comfortable environment designed for group living and learning.  We provide a strong group-based culture which helps young people engage with their difficulties, and support one another in recovering and achieving their potential.

We deliver exceptional outcomes for the young people in our care, enabling them to move on to college, employment and independence with confidence and the skills necessary to succeed.

Education at Merrywood House

Childhood First works closely with Norfolk education colleagues to ensure that the complex emotional and cognitive needs of all Merrywood House pupils are met within the Unity Academy Trust or other appropriate local schools.  Unity Academy Trust offers the full National Curriculum, with small classes allowing individual attention for each child.  

Placement and Family Support Service 

This dedicated service is available to support the whole family and network of each child in our care. Working together, we aim to promote the recovery of both the child and, where possible, the family. Where a child’s next placement is fostering or adoption, we work closely with all concerned to prepare the child and the family, and to ensure that the fostering or adoption placement is a success.

When it is time for a child to move on, the Placement and Family Support Service helps the family and network think and plan each step. Some children may continue with part of their treatment: staying on at school, continuing with therapy and family support at home, for example. Others may move on completely, but may need a more intensive package of support. We are able to tailor what we provide to each individual.

Referral Process

  1. Initial telephone conversation to result in request for relevant documentation, such as detailed chronology, core assessment, EHCP, psychological/psychiatric reports and copy of statement of SEN etc.
  2. Reciprocal visits, normally including Merrywood House Director to visit the child, and the child to visit Merrywood to meet both staff and children.
  3. Arrival date to be agreed.

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