Fit for Practice with Looked After Young People
John Woodhouse, Reconstruct
ISBN 09528064, £175
STAR RATING: 4/5
One thing trainers or practitioners presenting at a team day appreciate is a comprehensive training pack that they can pick up and use with minimal extra preparation, and this pack hits most of the right buttons, writes Helen Burrows.
A variety of sessions meet different learning styles, and the CD of clear Powerpoint presentations has some useful trainer’s notes. Good handouts, including a reader, complete the resources.
What I liked about this resource was how, in six modules, covering stages from initial assessment through to leaving care, participants are encouraged to see being looked after from the young person’s perspective, and to reflect on how their personal experiences, values and feelings affect their practice.
This makes it especially good to use in multi-disciplinary groups, or where experience levels are diverse. Exercises can generally be used as stand alone sessions, away from the full programme.
There is, however, room for possible improvements – diversity could, for example, be more integrated. Disability and ethnicity and culture are addressed in places, but not integrated throughout, and some important issues (for example, sexual orientation) feel marginalised.
Relatively inexperienced trainers could use this pack, with anyone who works with looked-after young people, from students, to foster carers, to managers. However, some of the exercises have a high emotion element for participants, and these need skill to manage; too many in one day could be really stressful.
Helen Burrows is a staff development officer with Leicestershire Council