Placement and Family Support
Our specialist Placement and Family Support service works closely with family members of children referred to us, to facilitate and support their relationships, and to repair them if they have been damaged or if they are damaging to the children. The 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, whether in our own specialist fostering service or another.
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 child and family.
Permission to recover
Children referred to us have often been unconsciously ‘elected’ by their family to represent and conduct themselves as ‘the problem’. If possible, we work with the child’s family to understand potential causes of the child’s emotional predicament. This work can be an important factor in each child’s recovery and enables the whole family system to benefit.
Where appropriate, we make our understanding of the child and its family available to the professionals working alongside us with the child. Such joint working can greatly improve the outcomes for the child. Effective corporate parenting results from the relevant adults spending time together making sense of the children and the surrounding relationships. Working with the wider network of social workers, teachers and psychiatrists, alongside the family, allows all aspects of the system which holds the child in suffering to be considered and addressed.
Where we are able to engage successfully with a family and the surrounding systems in this way, the child will, more often than not, be able to relinquish psychiatric diagnoses and prescribed medication, move forward to recovery, and take up opportunities for educational, social and personal development.