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Social work the ‘art of relationship’: parents’ perspectives on an intensive family support project

Mason, Claire (2012) Social work the ‘art of relationship’: parents’ perspectives on an intensive family support project. Child & Family Social Work, 17 (3). pp. 368-377. ISSN 1356-7500

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Abstract

From the findings of a study examining the perspective of parents using Intensive Family Support Service based in northern England, this paper examines the constituent elements required for effective relationship-based practice. Although the study is based in a single site in England, the findings are more broadly relevant, given both national and international interests in relationship-based practice in child protection. The participants in this study – parents whose children had been assessed as being ‘at the edge of care’ – were asked to comment on the intervention they had received. Analysis of parents’ interviews suggests that the service user–worker relationship was critical to their positive experience of the service. The paper provides an analysis of parents’ descriptions of ‘positive relationships’ and identifies the key themes. It then considers these findings in the context of contemporary children and families’ social work practice. Engaging with current debates, the paper makes reference to the impact of modernization, which has served to erode effective faceto-face work with families, given excessive ‘backroom’ demands of administration and audit. Discussion engages with an emerging emphasis on effective relationship-based practice following reports from Munro and the Social Work Reform Board. In this context, the paper concludes that the views of these families whose children are on the ‘edge of care’ offers insights into the skills required for relationship-based practice.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Child & Family Social Work
Uncontrolled Keywords: family support ; partnership ; relationship-based practice
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Applied Social Science
ID Code: 55240
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 20 Jun 2012 11:29
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 18 Sep 2012 16:16
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/55240

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