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Key characteristics of child care practice

Watch Graham McPheat as he provides a brief introduction to interventions and practice with vulnerable children and young people .

In this talk Graham provides a brief introduction to some of the different traditions and philosophies that exist, both UK based and international, which govern and guide how we intervene and practice with children and young people who are experiencing vulnerability and risk.

This involves thinking about child and youth care, social pedagogy, youth work, residential child care and social work.

The origins of child and youth care in North America and social pedagogy in mainland Europe are outlined, as well as some of the parallels and connections between the two. In particular the holistic approach to working alongside the ‘whole’ child within a relationship is emphasised.

Youth work may be a term that is more familiar to a number of people and the defining characteristics of this approach are introduced and links to social pedagogy and child and youth care are highlighted, in particular the centrality of the child and the relationship.

Residential child care, whilst being perhaps a more familiar concept, has often been rooted in the UK within a discourse of being viewed as an intervention of last resort, with family based care being much the preferred option. This has been increasingly challenged in recent years, particularly with the move of social work to become an increasingly procedure driven process where children and families social workers struggle to have the time and remit to engage in relationship based work, the hallmarks of some of these other approaches.

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Caring for Vulnerable Children

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