An in-depth assessment follows the Framework of the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families. Assessments are usually concluded within 12 weeks. Each Residential Assessment Plan is individually designed to meet the needs and requirements of the family and the referring agencies. Both centres reinforce positive parenting by creating a caring, nurturing environment, as well as the development of self-esteem and a sense of achievement. Our team offers intensive support to all families and where appropriate, 24 hour supervision.
An understanding of a family’s links in their own community forms a key part of our work. We work collaboratively with the referring Social Worker and other appropriate local agencies to identify and establish ongoing support links.
Families are assessed for their capacity to parent. Progress is monitored on a daily and weekly basis through observation and direct work. Historical issues and concerns are discussed in a self reflective manner, both to encourage recognition of problems and to develop an awareness of the link between past personal experience and one’s own current parenting attitudes.
Parents take part in planned programmes of direct work at a minimum frequency of two, one hour sessions per weekday. The intensity of the approach enables issues to be identified and addressed at an early stage in the assessment process.
Programmes of direct work include Child Protection, Domestic Violence, Alcohol Misuse, Substance Misuse, Relationships, Anger Management, Safety, Play and Child Development. Sessions are planned according to the issues and risks relevant to the family’s specific circumstances. Keys Family Assessment Services have a proven record of working successfully with families with a variety of needs including parents who have learning disabilities and/or mental health difficulties.
Following the completion of the assessment, an individually designed transition plan is identified in consultation with other professionals, enabling the family to be supported fully in the critical stage of returning to the community. This sensitive transition planning is in place for all families regardless of the outcome of the assessment. Keys Family Assessment Services do not use judgemental language like ‘pass’ or ‘fail’ in terms of the assessment and where removal is the recommendation, this is handled with great care and sensitivity with life story work being facilitated before the family leave the centre.