All the key National Minimum Standards and outcome areas will be assessed. The centre will work in partnership with the placing authority and other professionals prior to and during assessments. The average duration is 12 weeks where we observe behaviour, record situations and collate a transparent assessment by identifying a parent’s strengths and weaknesses, however it can extend to 16 weeks if there are any learning needs identified in the referral.
The support is mainly based on presenting evidence thus minimizing assumption where practicable. Assessment reports are made through agreement with social services to see if the desired outcomes are being met.
Chariteens Residential Family Centre also offers parents support with creating effective links with further and higher education resourcing and local training providers directly and through Connections.
During assessment, the main focus will be on positive parenting skills. The attachment theory will help parents to bond and nurture with their children. Most of the parents have suffered multiple traumas e.g. through domestic violence, substance misuse, child abuse and neglect in their own childhood.
This has contributed greatly to their lack of understanding of the needs of their own children or lack of complete positive parenting skills, information and guidance. As a result of this, Chariteens’ staff uses positive parenting programmes to assess and assist parents.
This is a weekly activity which will be based around a different theme each week. This enables parents to get a better understanding of the concerns of the local authority.
Each family will have regular Key Work sessions this will ensure that their individual needs are met including, providing support and advice on health and safety, support, drugs management networks, home safety, relationships, anger management. preparing meals and finances, budgeting or any other areas of life skills where a need is identified.
Staff at Chariteens aim to provide a supportive advocacy role for parents and work tirelessly to develop relationships based on trust and honesty. Our work is focused on the ‘Quality Protects’ ethos, which aims to deliver better life chances for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children. The Centre Manager and Key Workers will monitor the assessment process.
Staff will conduct play sessions, where parents are encouraged to interact and play with their children. This will assist staff to conduct assessment of child and parent interactions. Parents are given guidance on basic child care covering ensuring safety, emotional warmth, stimulation, guidance and boundaries, child development and stability.