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May 2016 National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit has launched! More details in the news section.

Welcome to the Secure Children’s Homes website. There are 15 individually managed Secure Children’s Homes throughout England and Wales encompassing a range of services within a secure environment that support the individual needs of the children in its care. They provide placements for boys and girls aged between 10 and 17 and include full residential care, educational facilities and healthcare provision. A very high level of intensive help is offered to each young person, with low children to staff ratios. The secure children’s homes work closely with multi-agency partners to deliver individualised care plans.

This website has been built to support social workers, local authorities, commissioners, partner organisations, young people and their families and guardians. It provides an overview of the homes and their services to demonstrate the exceptional quality of specialist care that each home provides. There are then links to the individual homes where much more specific information can be obtained. The website also provides a guide to the referrals process to facilitate making a placement.

The Secure Accommodation Network (SAN) is the body responsible for the development and promotion of Secure Children’s Home services and as such provides this website. Its membership consists of representatives from all Secure Children’s Homes. Some of the most vulnerable and at risk young people are placed in Secure Children’s Homes and therefore they are subject to in-depth regulation through Ofsted. The Secure Accommodation Network meets regularly to review national policy and work with national agencies to continue to develop best practice and improve outcomes for all.

We hope you find this website useful and informative and encourage you to keep in touch with the Secure Children’s Homes via this website and the Secure Accommodation Network. Please provide feedback, share your experiences and keep up to date with the latest developments in this effective and specialised area of children’s services.

National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit

Secure Children’s Homes and their strategic body, the Secure Accommodation Network (SAN), supported by the Department for Education (DfE) have been working hard to improve accessibility to the specialist services provided by Secure Children’s Homes. The National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit has been created to provide a dedicated single point of contact for secure welfare placements and streamline the process of finding the most suitable placement matching the individual needs of each young person needing secure care. This significantly reduces the time taken to place a young person in the most suitable accommodation.

A major benefit of the unit is that detailed information from all the Secure Children’s Homes, including each home’s specialisms, and the young people placed in them will be held in one place. This has the advantage of ensuring that all options for a young person can be considered enabling informed decisions about the most appropriate placement for them.

The National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit will maintain up to date availability information across all Secure Children’s Homes providing secure welfare care. The centralized unit will also be able to gain a much clearer understanding of the volume, demand and need profile of young people needing secure welfare accommodation. The unit will collect data on all aspects of referrals for young people and the outcomes of those referrals, including where there have been challenges to making placements. This coordinated information will be shared with the sector for its strategic development and will ultimately support Ministers to make decisions on the future of the sector.

The National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit is a small, dedicated team committed to ensuring the best outcomes for all children needing secure placements. The team has a wealth of collective experience within the social care sector enabling it to provide an efficient high quality national service. It will provide a single point of contact between those with the responsibility for placing young people into secure care and the Secure Children’s Homes.

The National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit went live on the 16th May 2016 and all referrals should now be made to the unit rather than approaching the Secure Children’s Homes directly. The unit can be contacted on 01962 846432.

Please refer back to this Secure Children’s Homes website over the next couple of weeks as it will be updated to include more information about the National Secure Welfare Commissioning Unit and the updated referrals process.

Job Opportunity at Adel Beck – Programmes and Development Manager

Adel Beck are currently seeking a new team member who has proven positive leadership and management experiences, can inspire staff to deliver high quality interventions to assist the development of young people and the ability to develop staff to ensure that these young people receive the highest standard of service.

Further information about the role and application instructions are enclosed in the vacancy description which can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.

Download File

BBC Radio 4’s File on 4 investigates the need for more places within Secure Children’s Homes

The programme investigates the growing concern over the shortage of secure places for children who pose a danger to themselves and others and the impact it has on their safety and care. Secure Children’s Homes look after some of the most vulnerable and damaged young people in the country but there is a desperate shortage of places. Secure Children’s Homes pick up the pieces of children’s broken lives when all else has failed.

The reporters visited Clayfields House Secure Unit and also spoke to some young people and their families who have benefited from the care provided by Secure Children’s Homes.

You can listen to the programme, No Place of Safety (03 Mar 2015), here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05410ws

Or download the podcast here:

LSCB Chairs Publishes New Guidance on Child Protection and Safeguarding

New guidance specifically for Chairs and LSCB members has been produced by Carolyne Willow, and published on behalf of the Association of Independent LSCB Chairs, and the NSPCC. This guidance aims to improve the effectiveness of LSCBs in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children in custody. As children from the age of 10 in any local authority can be detained for criminal justice reasons, this document is relevant to all LSCBs. This guidance includes a useful self-assessmen tool , 11 practice examples. It is also extremely well researched, with 7 pages of references.

Read the full report here http://www.lscbchairs.org.uk/sitedata/files/Child%20Protection%20and%20Safeguarding%20in%20Custody.pdf

How Secure Children’s Homes are Reducing the Risk of Self Harm

Children and Young People Now have produced an article exploring what the youth secure estate and health services are doing to reduce risk and protect the welfare of vulnerable young people.
The article can be read here (subscription required):
http://www.cypnow.co.uk/cyp/feature/1148317/suffering-inside-welfare-children-custody