Step down approaches for looked after children

Tracey Stokes made this Freedom of Information request to Norfolk County Council

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Dear Norfolk County Council,
I am interested to learn what the council is doing to achieve steps downs from residentail care
to fostering and how you used your funding to boost vulnerable children and young people
( £1 million 2020).
what impact have you seen for services and outcomes for children.

Yours faithfully,

Tracey Stokes

Freedom of Information, Norfolk County Council

5 Attachments

Dear Ms Stokes

 

Freedom of Information Act 2000 Information Request ENQ- 495385-D2V1L6

 

Thank you for your request for information received on 15^th July 2021.

 

We have up to 20 working days in which to deal with your request.

 

If we require clarification of your request we will contact you to explain
this, and the 20 working-day period will then start from the day that we
receive your clarification.

We will inform you in advance if there is a charge for supplying copies of
any information, and we will provide an explanation if any information
which we hold is not released to you.

 

If the requested information contains references to any third parties, we
may need to seek their views before we can decide whether or not to
release the information to you. In such cases we will not share your own
personal details with third parties.

 

Should you have any queries regarding your request, please contact the
team by email at [1][Norfolk County Council request email] or by telephone on 01603 222661.

 

Yours sincerely,

Lawrence Stringer, Information Compliance Officer

Strategy and Transformation

Dept: 01603 222661

County Hall

[2]Norfolk County Council[3]    [4]Twitter[5] [6]Facebook[7] [8]Web

 

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Freedom of Information, Norfolk County Council

5 Attachments

Dear Ms Stokes

 

Freedom of Information Request ENQ- ENQ-495385-D2V1L6

 

I refer to your request for information dated 15 July 2021.

 

You asked:

 

 1. I am interested to learn what the council is doing to achieve steps
downs from residentail care to fostering

 

Our response:        

 

Norfolk Fostering Service has embedded a new step down model called the
Enhanced Fostering Team and their primary role is to identify, match and
support family based placements for children living in residential
settings. The team has a Team Manager, a Clinical Psychologist, three
Social Workers and one Assistant Practitioner. The children the team work
with have experienced multiple placement breakdowns in the past, therefore
careful planning, matching and intensive support are vital to ensure the
placement sustainability. The Enhanced Fostering Team oversee the whole
process of matching a child with a fostering household by offering support
from the foster carer recruitment and assessment stage

 

o Clinical support available within the recruitment process
o Clinical support available for assessment of foster carer with
consideration to the foster carer’s reflective capacity/mentalization
skills and therapeutic parenting skills to matching and planning
through
o Extended assessment of young person in residential home by Supervising
Social Worker and Clinical Psychologist to inform matching and the
care plan and

ending with matching with foster carer by using care values scale and by
involving the young person in their planning of transition.

 

From the day, the placement begins, foster carers are in receipt of a
significantly increased level of clinical and social work support.

 

The role of the clinical psychology support is vital in providing a
psychological lens at all stages: recruitment and assessment of foster
carers, referral process of young people, developing matching/planning and
attending review meetings (fortnightly and monthly in the later stage)
with foster carer and network, clinical support to young person/foster
carer or dyadic therapeutic work offered when appropriate, monthly group
clinical supervision to staff and foster carers. The predominant clinical
model for this supervision is a mentalization based approach and the
supervision will be used to facilitate embedding the theory and learning
from the mentalization based therapeutic approaches.

 

This way of supporting placements has meant an enhanced support offered
within the first year and this has been key in helping children and carers
to trust that they can manage the very difficult times. All placements
have had very challenging periods, albeit by ensuring the robust secure
base on an ongoing and intensive basis has led to long term arrangements
and there is a number of carers and children who have now celebrated their
first year and have proudly presented their achievements to the Fostering
panel.

By introducing the Assistant Practitioner early on in the process
(sometimes even when the young person was still in the residential
setting) has also added familiarity and trust when matches were identified
and made and, as a result, the relationship has continued.  The Assistant
Practitioner often completes targeted work around young people’s feelings
by creating a safe space within a safe relationship. This is done under
the supervision of the Clinical Psychologist.

 

The model has inspired professionals who we have been working closely with
and, as a result of relationship based practices, residential workers and
teaching assistants have come forward either for named children or for
consideration for Enhanced placements with some currently in assessment.

 

 

 2. and how you used your funding to boost vulnerable children and young
people

( £1 million 2020).

 3. what  impact have you  seen for services and outcomes for children.

 

Our response:        

The investment of funds to support vulnerable adolescents in Norfolk has
enabled the creation of our new Targeted Youth Support Service (TYSS)

TYSS teams across all areas of the county went live in February 2021.

The service is designed to offer vital support to our front line social
care teams in order to:

o Reduce the likelihood of vulnerable adolescents becoming exploited.
o Improve the safety, health and emotional wellbeing outcomes of
adolescents vulnerable to exploitation and extra familial harm.
o Increase the resilience, aspirations and life chances of adolescents
vulnerable to exploitation and extra familial harm and support them in
their transition to adulthood.

The service offers:

Direct support to young people - Case-holding practitioners are now able
to call in support from TYSS youth support workers for cases where concern
or risk for a young person is predominantly extrafamilial and where the
young person would benefit from developing a trusted relationship with a
youth support worker in order to achieve safety and wellbeing outcomes.

Detached community-based youth work - Detached Youth Support Workers take
a contextual safeguarding approach to supporting individuals, peer groups
and communities in the places where young people congregate and will link
young people into the wider local youth offer.

Missing and return home work – Missing Practitioners undertake return home
interviews for young people who have been missing from home or care. The
return home interview is an opportunity for a young person to discuss what
happened during their missing episode with a worker who is independent of
their day-to-day care. They will explore reasons for going missing,
understand any risk or harm experienced during the missing episode and
work towards reducing likelihood of further missing episodes. The content
of return home interviews should be used to support safety planning for
children and young people active to social care.

 

While it is still very early days in terms of impact data collection, we
are confident that TYSS is able to make a significant contribution to
improving outcomes and reducing risk for vulnerable young people.

 

Current Data shows that of those children in Norfolk identified as at risk
of or suffering exploitation and or serious youth violence;
36 % of all currently identified children have a reduced risk since
initial screening for exploitation

81 % of those initially identified as at high risk (since feb 1st 2021)
now have a reduced risk

 

If you are dissatisfied with our handling of your request you have the
right of appeal through the Council’s internal review procedure by setting
out the grounds of your appeal in writing to:

 

[1][Norfolk County Council request email]

or Information Compliance Team

County Hall

Martineau Lane

Norwich

NR1 2DH

 

An appeal should be submitted within 40 working days of the date of this
notice and should be identified as "FOI Appeal".

 

If you are dissatisfied after pursuing the complaints procedure, you may
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Website at: [2]https://ico.org.uk/concerns/ for advice on how to report a
concern.  Or you can write to them at:

 

First Contact Team

Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane, Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

 

Yours sincerely

 

Senior Information Compliance Officer 

Information Compliance Team, Insight and Analytics, Strategy and
Transformation 

Tel Dept: 01603 222661

Bays 7,8 & 9, Ground Floor, South Wing, County Hall, Martineau Lane,
Norwich 

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From: Freedom of Information
Sent: 15 July 2021 15:35
To: '[FOI #774086 email]'
<[FOI #774086 email]>
Subject: ENQ-495385-D2V1L6: Freedom of Information request - Step down
approaches for looked after children

 

Dear Ms Stokes

 

Freedom of Information Act 2000 Information Request ENQ- 495385-D2V1L6

 

Thank you for your request for information received on 15^th July 2021.

 

We have up to 20 working days in which to deal with your request.

 

If we require clarification of your request we will contact you to explain
this, and the 20 working-day period will then start from the day that we
receive your clarification.

We will inform you in advance if there is a charge for supplying copies of
any information, and we will provide an explanation if any information
which we hold is not released to you.

 

If the requested information contains references to any third parties, we
may need to seek their views before we can decide whether or not to
release the information to you. In such cases we will not share your own
personal details with third parties.

 

Should you have any queries regarding your request, please contact the
team by email at [8][Norfolk County Council request email] or by telephone on 01603 222661.

 

Yours sincerely,

Information Compliance Officer

Strategy and Transformation

Dept: 01603 222661

County Hall

[9]Norfolk County Council[10]    [11]Twitter[12] [13]Facebook[14] [15]Web

 

[16]Campaign Logo

 

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