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Improving Practice in Communicating with Children and Young People

Stratford Circus Arts Centre, Theatre SquareLondon, E15 1BX

DATES TBC – Stratford Circus Arts Centre, London

This 1 day workshop aims to increase the competence and confidence of participants in working effectively with children for different purposes and across a range of settings when their opportunity for contact is limited.

Course Information:

Improving Practice in Communicating with Children and Young People

Child welfare professionals are increasingly being asked to work in more focused, shorter timescales with children and young people to ascertain their wishes and feelings in decisions that affect their future.  The aim of this course is to increase the competence and confidence of participants in working effectively with children for different purposes and across a range of settings when their opportunity for contact is limited.

The course will examine why children and young people often become invisible in the assessment process and how those barriers to keeping the child in mind can be identified and addressed. Effective communication with children requires a knowledge of child development and the bearing this has on how the worker and child interact. Basic skills such as ensuring the child knows who you are, why you have come to see them, what you need to know and how their information will be used will also be addressed.

Case studies and experiential exercises will be based on video clips of children who are pre-verbal or non-verbal and those who are at risk of maltreatment.

Learning Outcome

By the end of the day participants will have had the opportunity to:

  • Understand more about the systemic barriers that exist to keeping the child in mind and become more aware of their own ‘blind spots’ in this area
  • Review the importance of child development in assessing and safeguarding children
  • Consider what is involved in meeting children for the first time and the necessity of careful planning, preparation and use of language in these circumstances
  • Examine the challenges of communicating with children who may be at risk of significant harm and the role of communication in securing their safety
  • Explore observation and attachment in communicating with very young children

The day will begin at 9.30am for registration and tea / coffee, with a prompt 10.00am start, the course will end at approx 4.00pm

A light lunch will be provided. Please advise of any allergies or dietary requirements of each individual when booking places on this course.

An electronic certificate of attendance will be provided to all attendees by email after attendance at the course.


Your Trainer

Gretchen Precey

Gretchen Precey is an independent social worker, trainer and consultant specialising in child protection.  She qualified in 1978 and has worked in a variety of settings in different parts of the country. Her most recent employment in the statutory sector was as team manager at the Clermont Child Protection Unit in Brighton.  Whilst at the Clermont Unit Gretchen worked with many children and families affected by sexual abuse and also developed clinical knowledge and practical experience of working with Fabricated or Induced Illness.   She has worked independently since 1999.  Gretchen frequently runs training courses for both multi-agency and single agency groups of professionals who have responsibility for the safety and welfare of children. As an ISW she is commissioned by the court to undertake assessments in particularly complex cases, usually involving children in care proceedings or in disputed private law matters.  She has taken part in Serious Case Reviews as both a chair and overview report writer.  Her consultancy work has been for a range of local authorities on projects such as evaluating the effectiveness of Child Sexual Exploitation services and social work supervision arrangements.  For seven years she was an associate of Triangle, an organisation based in Brighton that offers services to disabled children and their families especially when there are concerns about the maltreatment of the child.  She continues to maintain an interest in this area of practice.

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Location

Stratford Circus Arts Centre

Theatre SquareLondon, E15 1BX

A vibrant venue with an impressive design and fully accessible building, Stratford Circus Arts Centre is a short walk from Stratford Station in Zone 2 and it’s easy to get there by road, bus, underground or rail from across London and beyond. Stratford Circus Arts Centre has a cafe open throughout the day from 9am, serving freshly baked cakes and pastries, and a selection of teas and coffee, the venue also has free Wi-Fi throughout the building.

Train
The DLR, London Overground and TFL Rail and National Rail services from Liverpool Street, all serve Stratford station.

Walking from Stratford station
Inside the station follow the signs for the exit to Stratford town centre.
Once you’re outside continue straight over the main road and turn left at the Mall entrance.
Follow the road around for about 300 metres to Theatre Square on your right, where you’ll see the Picture House on your left, Theatre Royal Stratford East on your right and Stratford Circus Arts Centre straight ahead.

Alternative route:
You can access Stratford Circus Arts Centre through Stratford Mall. Once you’ve crossed the road outside the station head into the mall.
Once you reach the centre of the mall, turn left and continue to the exit. When you exit the Mall, next to Theatre Royal (on your right). Stratford Circus Arts Centre is the next building along.

Bus
Bus routes 257, 69 (24 hours) and 308 stop outside Stratford Circus Arts Centre on Great Eastern Road.

Other services run to Stratford station: 25 (24 hours), 86, 104, 108 (24 hours), 158, 238, 241, 262, 276, 425, 473, D8.

Bicycle
There are cycle racks at to the left of the main entrance where you can leave your bicycle.

Car Parking
The nearest car park is Stratford multi-storey car park, which is accessed from Great Eastern Road. The entrance is easy to miss so keep an eye out for Service Route 1 on your right hand side, and once you’ve left the Great Eastern Road turn left to enter the car park via the ramp.

There is alternative parking at Westfield Stratford City Shopping Centre and Morrisons supermarket on The Grove.

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