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Skip to 0 minutes and 1 secondWell done to everyone for reaching the end of the six week course. This final discussion acts as a chance to think about some of the main themes that have arisen across the six weeks and the journey of learning that we've taken together. We've considered a large amount of material about what we think about and how we respond to children at risk of being or without parental care and how the UN Guidelines for Alternative Care of Children provides an important framework and helps to inform the work that we do.

Skip to 0 minutes and 29 secondsOver the weeks we've explored why it is so important to stop children coming into care when there's no justifiable reason and recalled the aims of alternative care for children who, when in their best interests, do need to be cared for outside the parental home. In particular, we've examined how to provide such care in a positive and constructive way that meets the individual needs, and characteristics, and the circumstances of each child, whilst ensuring their participation in decision-making. And we've looked at different ways to improve policy and practise, stressing that it must always be contextually appropriate whilst recognising availability of adequate resources are often a real concern.

Skip to 1 minute and 11 secondsWe've also recognised how important it is that childcare is an integral component of a child protection system and the need to develop all aspects of such a system consecutively if we're going to make a difference for children and families. I am sure, however, we'll continue to ask ourselves any amount of questions. So rather than provide an extensive list, we'll limit ourselves to a few. How do you now reflect upon the task of caring for children after having completed this course? What more could be done, or what could be done differently to improve how we care for children? Thank you so much for all your contributions.

Skip to 1 minute and 44 secondsWe truly hope you've enjoyed the course and that what you have learned will help you in the work you do to support children and families in your country. Best of luck.

Concluding thoughts

In this video, Jennifer Davidson shares with you concluding thoughts and summarises some of the main themes we have covered over the six weeks of the course

We have considered a large amount of material along the way regarding how we think about and respond to children at risk of losing, or those without, parental care. We have spent time considering the content of the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children and what the guidance means for those who have responsibility for developing and implementing child protection and child care systems.

We have learnt about the “necessity” and “suitability” principles and explored their meaning both as concepts as well as how they should be used in practice. Listening to children, young people, practitioners, and policy makers from different countries has meant we were provided with the opportunity to think about, not just what is good practice, but how we can ensure it is contextually relevant.

From all the topics we have explored over the past six weeks, there are numerous questions we could ask now. So rather than provide an extensive list we will limit ourselves to three key questions:

  • Thinking about the “necessity” principle, now you have completed the course, do you think differently about the task of preventing unnecessary use of alternative care?
  • Thinking about the “suitability” principle, do you think more could be done in your country, to improve alternative care for children and if so, what?
  • How can we ensure all decisions are always made in the best interest of children?

Please share your answers in the discussion below. Please remember to be mindful of confidentiality and the right to privacy of other people.

Remember, you can “like” comments if you agree with what’s been said or if you have found something particularly interesting, or you can “reply” to comments to initiate a conversation.

Thank you so much for all your contributions!

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This video is from the free online course:

Getting Care Right for All Children: Implementing the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children

University of Strathclyde

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