Family development worker
The individual in post meets the specification outlined and, critically, has experience of supporting someone with challenging behaviour as a carer. Well respected, knowledgeable and effective, the individual in post has provided support to reduce placement breakdowns and signpost families to services.
- The family development worker role was highly valued by families and professionals. One interviewee thought that it had enabled more constructive communication between the different parties, and avoided complaints ‘professionals and parents often misconstrue each other’s motivations/rationale. Parents are often stressed and may not hear correctly. Reasons given for the effectiveness of the role included the link workers own experience, her approach and her knowledge. A selection of quotes from families is included below:
- ‘She is always brilliant and attends everything with me. So full of advice and information. She actually has all this information in her head that children’s services didn’t know.’
- ‘Because she has been through it herself she knows from experience. It’s so helpful – she knows what she is talking about.’
- ‘She’s such an easy going person. Very calm, makes (my son) feel calm whereas other services can make him stressed and tense.’
- ‘She is always positive and I always feel positive after we have spoken. She is a great person with lots of good advice.’
- The family development worker ‘is a very approachable person, with a non-judgmental attitude, I feel this is key, as a parent of a child with challenging behaviour sometimes you feel nobody understands however because she has been through similar it actually draws you to her. She is a very kind and caring person and just knows what you are going through, and this helps.’