Work in Specialist Services
Specialist Services is made up of:
Residential and ARC ServicesFostering and Adoption0-25 TogetherChild Protection and Statutory ReviewCommissioning, Children Looked After and SafeguardingBrokerage Accommodation TeamLearning and DevelopmentSEND Commissioning and Brokerage
Residential and Adolescent Resource Centre (ARC) Services
Residential and ARC Services provide homes for teenagers who aren't able to live with their families or foster carers. This includes 1 home that is specifically for disabled young people.
We have 2 therapeutic Outreach Services incorporating a residential assessment programme and a therapeutic short break service. We also have specialist foster carers attached to the outreach projects. Our homes have been rated “Good with outstanding features” from Ofsted.
Fostering and Adoption
Fostering and adoption in hertfordshire is making good progress on the national agenda, both in our recruitment of adopters and increasing the number of children placed by nearly 50% in the last year.
Working with a partner in the private sector, our fostering service has been described nationally as “pioneering a creative programme for recruiting and supporting carers” and recently won a national customer service award.
A specialist service for disabled children, young people, young adults and their families with a focus on:
- supporting people to reach their full potential
- enabling their independence
- ensuring that they can take part in their local community.
The service supports young people and young adults until they're settled in to adult life.
Child Protection and Statutory Review
The Child Protection and Statutory Review service performs a key role in quality assurance and improving practice within our Children’s Services department.
The service includes the Independent Reviewing Officer and Child Protection Conference teams, Participation and Family Group Conference Service, Local Authority Designated Officers and School Liaison Officers.
We work closely with operational Safeguarding and Children Looked After teams, residential units, Fostering and Adoption teams, Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children’s Board and key partners like schools and the police.
Commissioning Children Looked After (CLA) and Safeguarding
The key function of the team is to develop effective commissioning plans to ensure services commissioned for children and young people in Hertfordshire deliver improved life outcomes for them. That's through the provision and continuous improvement of placements and support services that are safe and provide good value for money.
We work with a range of partners (locally and regionally). One of our key aims is to reduce the number of children and young people coming into care by offering early and appropriate intervention to families in order to support them to remain together.
The new commissioning provides opportunities for integrated working with the other commissioning areas (Early Help and 0–25 Integrated Services) to achieve better outcomes for children and young people.
The team has a statutory function to ensure that all Children’s Services commissioning activity complies with both our contract regulations and all relevant national and international procurement legislation.
We're responsible for ensuring services commissioned comply with the relevant safeguarding and equalities legislation.
Brokerage Accommodation Team
The Brokerage service sources support packages to help children stay with their families where it is safe to do so. We also find placements for children in care.
We work closely with our in house fostering and residential services and with independent providers to find the right placements.
Brokerage also support care leavers with housing related matters. Social workers refer into the service and our placement officers strive to get the best match to meet each child’s needs.
Learning and Development
The team offers a wide variety of learning opportunities through:
- face to face training
- short courses
- seminars and conferences
- project work and research
- reflective practice.
We also provide qualification and assessment programmes such as step-up, PQs, student placements and ASYE.
SEND Commissioning and Brokerage
We work closely with a number of different agencies to meet the complex and evolving needs of children in care. We also develop services to help and support this vulnerable client group at every stage.
Our workload is very varied, engaging and fast paced in this front-line service. You'll have the opportunity to develop a specialism in a particular area, attend relevant training and become involved in a wide range of projects as part of joint working partnerships with other departments.