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When systems designed to protect do harm

What comes to mind when you think about the child protection or youth justice system?  Protection and safeguarding? Rehabilitation? Trauma-informed care? These two complex and often interacting systems are intended to keep children, young people,...

Current research shows that children who are "dual-involved" in both child protection and youth justice systems are prone to criminalisation when these systems don’t interact effectively. This system failure is known as systems abuse. Dr Claire Paterson-Smith, Dr Tatiana Corrales, and Dr Patricia McNamara presented their preliminary findings on their important, if troubling, research: The criminalisation of children in care in England/Wales, New South Wales and Victoria. Their research highlights the urgent need for positive systemic change, and what we can do in our day-to-day practice to move us in the right direction.

Responding to behaviours that challenge – practice guide

Much has been written about understanding and managing the challenging pain-based behaviours of children and young people who have experienced trauma and live in therapeutic or out of home care. Anglin (2002) coined the phrase...

This practice guide explores what is meant by the term ‘behaviours that challenge’, why children and young people display behaviours that challenge, the

Children, young people and sleep

Many of those of you who know me, know that I have a big interest in sleep hygiene and the children and young people in out of home care (OOHC). To this end I have...

Many of those of you who know me, know that I have a big interest in sleep hygiene and the children and young people in out of home care (OOHC). To this end I have put together a small package of material that I hope you will take the time to look at and discuss …

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    Making sense of complex and challenging behaviours

    An inability to understand trauma-based behaviours often sees young people ‘labelled’ in ways that can create a ‘spiral of negativity’. A trauma-informed approach orients us to be curious about what is going on for the young person rather than seeing their behaviour as separate from what has happened to them. This is one of the …

    Understanding and supporting young people who self-harm in residential care

    Some of the young people we care for in the ITC programs deal with emotional distress and pain by hurting themselves physically. Young people hurting themselves is distressing to them and to those who care for them. ITC staff may experience a range of emotions, including anger, sadness, helplessness, guilt, shame or disgust. In response …

    Preventing self-harm among young people in out-of-home care – Research brief

    This Research Briefing explores why young people in out of home care self-harm, what the predictors for self-harm are, how best to intervene, and what out of home care providers need to know to prevent self-harm and suicide.

    ‘Tis the Season to be Jolly’ – but not for everyone

    It’s all too easy to get wrapped up in the fun and happiness of Christmas and forget that, for others, the season isn’t necessarily a joyful one. For some the young people in the ITC system, Christmas has not been a happy time and can bring back difficult memories. Arguments, violence or aggression in the …

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