Looking for long-term outcomes: what early interventions are needed for children and young people at risk of maltreatment in England?
The Safeguarding Children Research Initiative (Davies & Ward, 2012) was a programme of fifteen studies commissioned by the Department of Health and what is now the Department for Education, each of which explored a different aspect of safeguarding children. This paper brings together the findings of these studies to explore the types of strategies that have been shown to promote positive long-term outcomes for children and young people at risk of maltreatment. The authors ighlight the potential harm caused to children when they are exposed to maltreatment and demonstrate the range of interventions that have been developed to improve their long-term outcomes. The paper provides examples of universal, targeted and intensive services with a strong evidence base for success. The most effective intensive interventions are found to be those that prevent the occurrence or re-occurrence of altreatment, address the underlying factors associated with maltreatment and the various stages associated with the process of change. The authors also examine the supplementary issues practitioners need to be aware of when considering the choice of intervention, including some of the obstacles to providing support, such as the nature of the evidence base, the extent to which different agencies work together to provide services for vulnerable children and families, the availability of resources and the ways in which children and families move between different parts of the child welfare system. If practitioners are to make best use of the available interventions, it is important that they select those underpinned by robust evidence showing that positive outcomes have been achieved for families in similar circumstances
- Social Sciences
- Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies