Examples of initial support approaches:
We try to ensure young people know that the team are always welcoming, and happy to talk and provide support, proving that we are worth trusting, and are reliable and consistent. Providing a safe and non-judgemental space for young people who want to talk (about just about anything!)
We make sure young people know any routines, structure, rights and responsibilities of their home, and that this is a calm, safe and friendly environment for them.
We also go through the limits of confidentiality and how we share their information, including multi-agency partnership working, and safeguarding, and we are always monitoring for signs of exploitation and abuse.
Support Planning and key-work, in the form of regular support sessions – both formal and informal, including completing our Mental Health and Wellbeing Toolkit, helps to support young people with a range of mental health conditions (including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) at an earlier stage, facilitating better access to specialist services. Research conducted in partnership with Cardiff University showed that this toolkit, combined with support, has enabled young people to better manage their own mental health.
Via the support plan, this work can also ensure that all areas of need are being addressed, from ensuring that young people are registered with a local GP, accessing specialist mental health services to exploring education, training and employment opportunities as well as access to local services for positive social activities and other services. We link our Support Plans with others young people may have e.g., CLA Reviews / Pathway Plans, to avoid duplication.
You can access links to download support plans here:Support plans
Young people are motivated to engage with, and can access clinical psychologists, reflective practice sessions and team support, and a pilot counselling service which at the point they need it.
Assertive outreach workers enable young people to ‘step into’ well-being, training and employment providing vital linkages and opportunities to build confidence ahead of further opportunities.
Family mediation involves with young people and family members to re-build relationships, and building lifelong skills to manage relationships with neighbours and the community, making sure there are as many informal support networks for each young person as possible.
We work on dreams and aspirations (and for some, making sure our young people know they can have these!). We support young people to build skills, experience, confidence and independence, focussing on their strengths, positives and achievements. We refer into or signpost to other agencies to meet specialist any needs.
Developing skills also involves making sure young people have all the support they need to overcome barriers – and are supported to engage with that support. We ensure that we are working in partnership with other local teams, such as Probation, and Youth Offending Services, Communities for Work, if appropriate.
Taking a multiagency approach can ensures that we are also able to be solution focused when issues and challenges arise so that we intervene as early and effectively as possible and support young people to succeed. Young people we are supporting can also access pre-vocational training, and those who have previously disengaged from traditional mainstream education, can be supported into other provision.
Many young people accessing support have usually not had the luxury of opportunities that other young people have. We support them to access these opportunities such as day trips, sports, activities, volunteering and work placements. This helps them to find out what they like and are good at, and what does not work so well for them.
We have established partnerships with businesses who provide the young people supported with opportunities to attend events and social activities which otherwise would simply not be affordable for them. Examples include rock climbing, ice-skating, tickets to concerts at Principality Stadium, sports matches, cinema and the theatre.
This step supports young people to become more independent, whatever that may be – securing a new job, new training, a new family or education. We utilise a range of funds to support this where there are no other alternatives: