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Caring for Children

Provided by the Children's Services Department

Children and families social care teams

These teams are district based to make sure families and young people get the best service and experience the least changes of worker.

Referral and Assessment teams

This will be the first team you meet. Dealing with all new cases and working with children, families and young people for possibly up to four months, they will help you to understand the issues you face and plan with you what to do to resolve them.

An exception to this will be if it is immediately clear that another team will be involved in the longer term. An example would be, if a child needs longer term special help from one of our disabled children’s teams. If this is agreed a worker from one of those teams will quickly become involved.

 

Children in Need teams

These teams will work with you if difficulties cannot be resolved in a shorter time. Sometimes issues will not be resolved within four months or it may be sensible to move to another team more quickly.

If this is the case a worker from one of the Children in Need teams will become the main person involved. A team of workers from different agencies may be involved because they agree a Child Protection Plan is needed. This may also be because a worker is involved for legal reasons (for example: private fostering, or a court being asked to decide what should happen next), or simply because social work is needed for longer to complete a plan.

 

Children in Care teams

For some children and young people the best plan is for them to be looked after by someone other than their immediate family, that is to be ‘In Care’. When the agreed plan is for this arrangement to be longer term, a social worker from the Children in Care team will become involved. They will work with the child, family and others to make sure that being in care is as positive an experience as possible.

A young person who has been in care and reaches the age of 18 years should still be able to receive help as they need it. Youth teams will provide a worker to ensure assistance is offered in these circumstances.

More information about Children in Care.

 

Adoption teams

If a plan for adoption is agreed a worker from one of these teams will take over until the adoption is completed. These teams will also work to assess and train adults who want to adopt a child.

More information about adoption.

 

Locality teams

The focus of these teams is about being involved, or helping other agencies to get involved, before problems reach a stage where social work teams need to intervene or offer services.

The teams include the education welfare workers who will become involved if children and young people are not attending school for some reason.

They also include workers who help all other agencies use the ‘Common Assessment Framework’ – which is a way of agreeing early on what help children, young people and families in any circumstance may need. These workers also offer help to families directly.

More information about locality teams.

 

Disabled Children’s teams

These teams are not changing, but they will be working much more closely with colleagues from health services to make sure that services from health and social care are co-ordinated.

More information about special needs and disabilities.

 

Youth teams

The youth teams will continue to deliver outreach and centre-based services to all young people as they always have, but will also have the specific role with young people over 18 years old who are leaving care as described on the about Children in Care teams page.

More information about services for young people.

 

Other teams

Other teams that may be involved in offering services could be the intensive support services. These teams may become involved to support a plan and prevent a situation deteriorating to a point where a child needs to come into care or move from an existing foster placement.

The contact teams will manage and supervise situations where a child in care needs help to have contact with their family.

The post adoption team will become involved in organising support if particular help is needed after an adoption order is made.