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Working in partnership with families
The overall aim is that any work undertaken with children and their families should be done in partnership, and this is integral to everything that we do.
Partnership can be described as:
- a shared commitment to negotiation and resulting actions which mean that a child remain safe from harm and their welfare is promoted
- mutual respect for each other's viewpoint
- recognition of the power imbalance between children, their families and professionals involved
- ensuring that as professionals we talk in a way that children and their families can understand
- the establishment of trust between everyone involved
- the involvement of the child in decision making where appropriate (considering their competency level)
- recognition by all involved of any constraints that may be present (e.g. in relation to services offered)
- recognition that partnership is not an end, but is required to effect change.
- Where working in situations that are outside of your areas of knowledge (e.g. working with ethnic minority families) there may need to be involvement of others (e.g. interpreters ) to ensure that partnership working continues.
The child's views differ to their parents
Workers need to find ways of working with parents, and recognising their knowledge and expertise without losing sight of the young person's views and feelings.
There are no limits to partnership working ... Staff should not limit the notion of partnership to parents, nor should they only consider parents as family.
'Family' could include grandparents, extended family, friends of the family, friends of the young person and significant others.
For guidance on when to include significant others when a parent with consent is in disagreement, please refer the Islands Child Protection Committee Guidelines, 'involvement of significant others'.
- Child protection
- Youth Offending
- Children with Disabilities