Martin C Calder, Social Work Trainer, Consultant and Author
There has been a lot of rhetoric in recent years about reclaiming direct work with children and their families against a backdrop of bureaucracy, business processes and a lack of emphasis or focus in training or education. The authors utilise their extensive experience to provide workers with an informed, practical roadmap for engaging with family groups to enhance outcomes for all children and their families. This practical book provides a plethora of ideas and materials to guide people through this and in so doing provide a resource that encourages us to achieve the reality of direct work rather than accept the continued rhetoric. It will be widely used by ever-busy frontline workers wanting to re-focus their practice.
Andy Jeffries, Service Manager, Children's Practice Teams, The City of Edinburgh Council
This book provides lots of very practical suggestions for practitioners regarding the kind of things they should be thinking about and looking for when entering a child's home. It looks at building relationships with the family and finding imaginative and fun ways to engage and build some consensus on what is needed for the child or children and how we can best achieve it together. What comes across is a healthy sense of professional curiosity and the notion that being yourself and being prepared to take some risks in your engagement with families - as long as it's accompanied by a good level of self-awareness and critical reflection - will make successful outcomes more likely. Audrey and Helen's work is not just useful and informative but fun to read. I hope that others too will enjoy the book and find something to inspire and inform their direct practice with families.
David Shemmings OBE PhD, Professor of Child Protection Research, University of Kent
Audrey and Helen have produced a real treasure trove of practical, easy-to-use ideas that really work with children and their families. Conscious that vulnerable people are likely to have experienced hardship and disadvantage, their ideas are rooted in the reality that children and adults may initially be resistant to professionals' offer of help and support. The book is a 'must have' addition for practitioners who work in the field of child protection and welfare.