Case Management: Care and Protection Plan Implementation and Review
Case implementation involves transforming a child’s Care and Protection Plan into real actions. It is important that, whenever possible, the case worker remains responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Plan and coordinating access to services. In the often rapidly changing situation of emergencies, and/or the wish of some children to continue to travel, these tasks can become fragmented and may not always happen according to the Plan.
Nevertheless, if you are the case worker, you will need to try your best to ensure the child is placed in the alternative care selected for them, and arrange for the protection and other support services specified in their Plan for as long as the child is under your care. Likewise, if you are a service provider named in a child’s Plan, it is your responsibility to make sure they receive the support identified for as long as is necessary.
Monitoring and Review
It is important a case worker regularly monitors each child’s situation and ensures they have actually been placed in the most suitable form of alternative care for them. The case worker should also make sure children are receiving all the appropriate services and support as detailed in their Care and Protection Plans. The review process should identify any changes in a child’s circumstances and necessary adjustment should be made to their Care and Protection Plan that reflects these changes.
Monitoring should be more than a bureaucratic exercise. If you are the case worker, you should be:
- Meeting the child on a regular basis and listening carefully to what they say
- Consulting the person responsible for the child’s alternative care
- Checking the child is receiving all the appropriate services and support as laid out in their Case Plan
- Identifying any changes necessary in the alternative care arrangements of the child’s Case Plan, and adjusting the child’s Case Plan to reflect these changes. This might, for example, include a move to a more suitable care placement
Following guidance found in different international and national agency handbooks and toolkits, there are recommendations that this review should be done no less than every six months.
Again, we do understand that there may be challenges. It might be difficult to get access to the services a child needs. There may be budget restrictions or lack of cooperation among different service providers. You may have an overwhelming number of children you are responsible for. We hope, however, that you will do your utmost to make sure a child’s Plan is implemented, monitored and reviewed on a regular basis.
The ‘See Also’ section below has links to other reading material that may be of interest to you.