All behaviours identified for a young person will require the staff team to effectively manage and respond to appropriately. A young person’s care risk management plan should identify how we aim to achieve this during their placement. Young people should be involved with this process of identifying areas for development and what they would like to achieve.
Our behaviour management strategy is founded in the principles of Team Teach and we utilise approved Team Teach methods when using physical interventions with the young people.
Team Teach have developed their policies and techniques from Government Guidance documents, ‘Positive Environments where Children can flourish’, ‘Guidance for Restrictive Physical Interventions’ and ‘Guidance on Permissible Forms of Control in Residential Care’.
Team Teach uses ICM (Institute for Conflict Management) and all staff receive a 2 day intensive course delivered by two Team Teach approved instructors. The instructors continually assess throughout the course, with overall pass or fail judgement. All staff undergo 12/18 month refresher training or, if extra support is required, the instructors are available for extra training in the restraint techniques via team meetings.
Physical intervention techniques will only be adopted if a young person is about to cause severe injury to themselves or others or that they are about to cause significant damage to property that is likely to involve police intervention and must be used as a last resort. Dove Adolescent Services are committed to reduce the amount of criminal prosecutions that inhibit young people moving on from the care system and view Team Teach as a positive method of achieving this aim.
Building positive relationships
Our staff teams work hard to build constructive, warm relationships with young people and this helps to actively promote positive behaviour. We always take into consideration the views and relationships of young people prior to any staff changes.
Our staff work with all appropriate outside agencies involved with the child to ensure any offending or socially unacceptable behaviour is addressed. The young people will be supported to understand and build friendships with other young people and will be able to spend time with them if and when appropriate due to their care and risk plan, age and level of understanding. Staff are trained to recognise the signs of peer on peer abuse and provide support to the young people in their care regarding exploitive and damaging relationships with others. Staff understand through training how to prevent these types of relationships and who to inform.
Reward and recognition
Positive behaviour and relationships will be reinforced, praised and encouraged and poor behaviour will be managed effectively, including the use of restorative practice. We recognise that praise is an essential part of this process and will build the confidence and self-esteem of the young person when done correctly.
We use reward systems to encourage positive behaviour. This encourages young people to thrive from positive attention and in turn will impact on their behaviour and self-esteem. The rewards system reflects the high standard of behaviour expected from the young people in the home and these expectations are clear, unambiguous and incorporate the holistic needs and their educational provision. Young people will be involved in the development of their personalised rewards system in order to motivate them to behave in a socially acceptable way. The individual rewards and goal systems concentrates on behaviour modification and focusing the young person to overcome perceived problematic behaviour; this can only be achieved once they have acknowledged that their behaviour is problematic.
Reward systems need to be structured and time restricted and provide young people with knowledge of what is socially acceptable. These should be creative, age appropriate and realistic. We have high aspirations for what young people are able to achieve, however, do not aim to make rewards unobtainable as this will only lead to further disruption in their behaviour and effect relationships with the staff team
Our ultimate goal at is to support young people to develop the self-esteem and confidence to either return to a family environment or more usually a transition to independent living within society. To enable positive transitional stages we aim to educate young people about the social, economic and financial pressures that living independently will incur. We therefore encourage all our young people to become involved in budget control at a level appropriate to their age and level of understanding.
As part of this approach we promote educational achievement, empowering the growth of their self-confidence as well as enabling them to secure employment and therefore aid a stable economic environment for them. Additionally we encourage the young people to research the best places to shop thus allowing them to get the best value for their money, we encourage them to explore different and varied activities which are free or low cost and by providing education and good role models we aim to maximise their ability to achieve long term economic wellbeing.
We believe that life story work/journey books are an essential tool to enable young people to establish their identity and we support young people in gaining an understanding of who they are as individuals and where they come from. Each young person will have their own individualised journey book which will detail their time at the home. The journey book will be given to the young person when they move on from the home.
Young People's Views
Consultation with young people is at the heart of all the work we do and the decisions we make about the child’s life are made with their involvement. We do this through holding regular house meetings, one to one sessions with the child, key worker sessions and carrying out focus work.
Enjoyment and Achievement
We provide our young people with a range of diverse learning experiences such as activities and holidays which provide opportunities for positive and trusting relationship building. We are proactive in recognising any achievements made by the young people and celebrate these with them.
Protection of Young People
We have a strong culture surrounding safeguarding issues where staff feel empowered and confident in risk management and safeguarding. Staff are clear about their roles to protect young people and the need to communicate effectively to create excellent multi-agency relationships.