A warm welcome to our newest members;
Adriana Morao – Portugal
Rute Lopes– Portugal
David Mitchell – Scotland
Kerri Ramsaidh– Scotland
Janine Mitchell – Australia
Mark Siegmund – USA
This edition of the International News offers papers that reflect on aspects of child care policy in the UK and India.
In his article ‘children in care – a personal reflection’, Ed Nixon writes of his experience in the 1970s and 80s, when some Community Homes with Education (CSE’s), did not acknowledge the underlying trauma of the young people placed in them, and unconsciously recreated institutional abusive experiences. He reminds us that to break such cycles we need services for young people that offer an opportunity to safely explore relationships and attachment issues. Placements need to be fully supported by needs assessments, and policy which is trauma informed.
This issue is picked up again by Chris Wager in his article ‘the therapeutic living gap in provision for adults’. Chris writes about his personal struggle to access adult services for those who find themselves alone at the point of leaving care.
Andrew Smith’s article ‘delivering therapeutic care to children’ argues for policy to ‘formulate a clear understanding of entitlement, and challenge the inequality present’. Linking with the previous articles it raises the question what might trauma informed policy look like? Has policy become too disconnected from practice, driven by austerity measures and risk mitigation?
We publish two articles from India, which focus on the need for integrated services. The first by Udayan Care, is their report on working with ‘adolescent depression’. The second is ‘adolescence in India: an experiential journey’ by Swetha Rao and Manab Bose, who are working to develop inclusive therapeutic schools for the children of Bangalore.
We finish with articles from practice. John Burton publishes his paper ‘It’s bedtime again’, which provides a framework for thinking about the importance of attending to detail within an important routine in therapeutic child care.
Keith White concludes with his regular offerings from Mill Grove, in ‘a question of sport’ he explores the experience of team games as valid therapeutic experiences, and he leaves us with the question ‘can you mourn the loss of more than one person’. This offers us the opportunity to reflect on how many of the children and young people we work with, who have had to cope with multiple losses, and how we might start to create practice frameworks that take such fragmented and complex starts to life into consideration.
The International Centre continues to work to share practice, training and research into the lives of children and young people who are made vulnerable by trauma.