Lost and Found
Making and Remaking Working Partnerships with Parents of Children in the Care System
First published in 1999, this volume is a collection of essays focused on the theme of partnership with parents in social work practice with children and families. It covers issues relating to the quality of care and preparation for aftercare, particularly children’s identity needs and preparation for life after care which are highlighted in the Quality Protects programme. It developed from an action research project, funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and conducted by the editors a Warwick University between 1993 and 1996. Through teaching activities associated with the implementation of the Children Act 1989 the editors became aware that there were many parents who had lost contact with both their child and their child’s social workers after their child had entered the care system. These were the ‘lost’ parents of the study. Partnership with parents has become an integral part of social work with children and families living together or apart. Inevitably it concerns many other people involved in the care of children and providing advice to individuals. Partnership permeates all aspects of relationships between parents, children and those providing care in place of parents. Consequently, the issues discussed in this book are of relevance to all those working directly or indirectly with children, parents and other relatives. Amongst these are social workers, family placement workers, carers and residential workers, team managers and policy makers in local authority social services departments, guardians ad litem, court welfare officers and lawyers acting for children or parents, children’s rights officers and advisers working in voluntary agencies which support families and children.
Table of Contents
1. Recreation and Promotion of Partnership through Action Research. Christine Harrison and Judith Masson. 2. Legal Issues: Partnership with Parents and Children’s Rights. Judith Masson. 3. Working in Partnership with Parents of Children Being Looked After: Issues of Theory, Research and Practice. June Thoburn. 4. Young People, Being in Care and Identity. Christine Harrison. 5. Partnership with Parents of Children in Foster Care or Residential Care. David Berridge. 6. Rebuilding Partnerships with Parents of Looked-After Children. Judith Masson and Christine Harrison. 7. Partnership and Leaving Care. Nina Biehal. 8. The Experience of Making Contact with Birth Parents in Adoption. Alan Burnell. 9. Partnership and Contact: Issues for Management. Brian Waller. 10. Searching for Lost Parents. Annie Pavlovic.
Judith Masson is Professor of Law at the University of Warwick. She was a co-director of the 'working in partnership with "lost" parents' project. She has specialized in sodolegal studies of children, families and social work, conducting research into step-parent adoption, wardship and the representation of children in care proceedings, and working on the Department of Health's implementation programme for the Children Act 1989. She is currently undertaking research on emergency intervention to protect children. Christine Harrison is currently a lecturer in social policy and social work at the University of Warwick, where she teaches on qualifying and post-qualifying social work programmes. She has extensive previous experience as a social worker and guardian ad litem and is consultant to staff in a hostel for women offenders. Her current research interests include assessment in child care and child protection, feminist perspectives in social work and young people in the care system. Annie Pavlovic graduated in sociology from the University of Warwick. She has wide experience as a researcher in sodolegal and sodai workrelated projeds, particularly on the probation service, the adoption contad register and relationships between siblings. Between 1993 and 1996, she was a full-time research fellow on the "lost" parents' project. She has lectured in sodai policy and is currently a ledurer in sociology at Nene University College, Northampton.