National and local guidelines, policies and procedures for safeguarding that affect My role as a carer on a day to day basis
Within the home from a childcare practice prospective since being at Genus care I have discovered that this affects my day to day work as I must be aware of the child protection procedures at all times, such as how to spot the signs of abuse, how and who to report my concerns too and how to maintain a safe environment within the home. Within the home I must always be aware of the health and safety of children and I attend all training that is provided.
From a Child Protection perspective the company’s policies and procedures for safeguarding states that all employees should be properly vetted, which includes checks into the eligibility and the suitability, and that CRB checks should be carried out. If I didn’t produce a CRB check to make sure I didn’t have any criminal convictions or to check my suitability to work with children and young people then I would not be allowed to work in my setting.
Risk assessments are hugely important within Genus care and we have recently changed the format in how we carry out Risk assessments so that each Child that we look after has individual ones done for all types of activities. Risk assessments ensure that safeguarding children is paramount and coincides with all policies and procedures. When I carry out a risk assessment i always calculate the danger of the risk over the type of activity due to the rights of the child and known that most activities carry a potential risk factor and by carrying out a good and accurate Risk assessment it ensures the safety of me as well as the child.
Being empathetic and around for the Young Persons is important during the Day to day routine in the home. As a Carer I act as a role model and advocate for the Children I look after and within that role ensuring that they feel valued and listened to is important as it safeguards them and protects them from abuse and poor practice. Each child receives a Key worker who will always look and act on the Childs behalf if needs be whilst being a key worker I was able to build a relationship of trust with the child and could openly discuss anything that needed to be spoken about. The government developed national standards for advocacy practice to ensure that children are able to speak out and have their views heard. I have also attended appropriate adult training so that in the event a child wishes to have an advocate I am able to be that person for them or have an understanding of how to access the service and get one for them.
According to the local safeguarding board regulations 2006, serious case reviews will be required in situations where a child has died due to known or suspected abuse or neglect. Sometimes reviews may be carried out where a child has been seriously harmed or suffered life threatening injuries. Serious Case reviews are used to identify failing systems and poor practice within those agencies. By having serious case reviews we are able to identify lessons which are to be learned and improve practise as well as the care being provided to individuals. After a report is published it will get printed out within the home and put in our office where all team members are expected to read it, our policies and procedures are updated to include any changes that this report will highlight and often the case is added to the child protection training that gets provided annually.
Whilst working within Genus Care I have established many processes for safeguarding policies and procedures within the home REG’s take place every month in order to check and maintain good practice through-out the company and that the systems in place are working correctly. A monthly audit is carried out that focuses on all paperwork and files, I check the Young People’s files and make sure they are filled in correctly and to a high standard all month. I record pocket money so that I can monitor how much each child has roughly this allows me to recognise if a child receives a large amount of money or some new expensive clothing I can easily identify if it is something they have brought or could afford or is it potentially the child being groomed or payment for something they have done illegally as they are highly vulnerable.
Any type of conversation that takes place between myself or a Child that is sensitive or could be seen as personal I record on a observation sheet this is then typed up read by all team members and emailed across to the social worker this to enable a complete transparent process through-out the company and to show that my practise is to a high level and that I can be trusted to provide the best care to the individuals I look after.
When working with Children and using a Child centred approach I find it important when looking at safeguarding to evaluate the impact it has. I am able to understand the child in a much clearer way and learn about them and their background things they like and dislike. The Young person will often open up to me and tell me how they feel including wishes they have regarding their current situation and how they wish their future will turnout.
I am able to work with the Young person to establish plans that can be passed on too their social worker or relevant agencies/ organisations and makes the child feel valued also because it is a plan with a structure and well presented it makes the response more accurate and appropriate to meet the specific needs of the child or young person.
It is paramount for me to have a trusting relationship with the child or young person I work with that allows me to focus on key issues during it’s my life sessions or just when working one to one with them. Allowing them to express concerns, which will give the professionals the opportunity to involve the child or young person where possible in decision making about current intervention if necessary and any future action, as ‘the unknown’ will cause anxiety for the child and potentially lead to incidents by the uncertainty of not knowing what will happen. By keeping the child aware step by step will make the process less daunting and give a more accurate account of the problem and potential outcomes.
Within the company there is a Philosophy policy that focuses on unconditional positive regard towards the children I look after and the ideology of known your child and working on a 1 to 1 basis in order to maximise the relationship. The benefits to this are that the Young person is able to build a strong relationship with me and trust is easy to gain. The child is able to feel safe when I am around them and I comfortable to open up about issues they may have. The problem with this is it creates an unnatural attachment towards the young people and carer which blurs the lines between professional boundaries sometimes and can lead to false allegations to be made. In order to prevent this it is important to follow the child protection policy and ensure that I create an accurate and thorough paper trail that includes all conversations, accurate accounts in the log book and maintaining the highest level of daily record keeping.
It’s my life work gets carried out as we are a therapeutic placement and according to all policies and procedures moving our Children forward is key in our focus we follow care plans which looks at the 7 pillars of parenting, again the negative to this is that is sometimes quite institutional and words like care plan, care plan objectives and sanction gets used. I try and maintain a family atmosphere when on shift and according to the company polices we have annual holidays and celebrate birthdays and Christmas as a complete family unit. This allows each child to be a part of something but also is creating a false sense of family that is unfamiliar to the children we look after.
The personal centred approach is leading the way within care and how I feel I safeguard the young people I look after. It creates the most nurturing environment to allow Young people to develop and become well rounded individuals. I feel that through caring and being there for the Child it makes them feel valued and able to be themselves. Providing this type of environment ensures that the safety and welfare needs of the child are always met.
When dealing with development and review processes of the policies and procedures in place that protect and safeguard children and young people the professional bodies that I mostly deal with are the social worker/ social services I would expect to speak to the social worker twice weekly as well as have regular contact via phone and email during the week. All relevant paperwork is emailed straight through so the social worker is kept up to date with all issues and progress that the child is making. The local safeguarding board/ Police would generally only be contacted/ involved en-light of a serious allocation or situation that arose within the home or involving the Childs welfare. The school is something I do on a daily basis during the week I will get feedback about the day and how the child got on during that day via telephone call or report card. The health visitor/ Lac Nurse, is a annual check up feedback is given and recorded in the Childs personal medical file which is stored in the office and all team have access too. CAMHS offer a mental health service which enables Young person to receive help and counselling if any problems arise and they feel they cannot express themselves to me or the team.