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The importance of social worker's invitation of children in Children's House, Barnahus, into partnership
Kristianstad University, Research Environment Children's and Young People's Health in Social Context (CYPHiSCO). Kristianstad University, Research Platform for Collaboration for Health. Kristianstad University, School of Health and Society, Avdelningen för Ekonomi.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1021-6812
2015 (English)In: New directions in child protection and wellbeing making a real difference to children's lives, 2015Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Objectives

Children's Houses (CH) in Sweden are inspired by the Children's Advocacy Centre model. They aim to improve professional cooperation in investigating if a child may be victim of serious offence and need of protection, In CH professionals, police, prosecutors, health care and social welfare services collaborate in making the voice of the child heard in forensic interviews. In this ongoing study the aim is to explore the impact of the introduction of CH in social work encouraging the social workers' in their efforts to increase the children's involvement in the social investigation and the assessing processes.

Methods

This is a systemic participatory action research study where the emerging findings create foundations for further orientation in how to go on in practice both as participating social worker and researcher. In total 51 social workers have narrated in interviews and other meetings about the social work in the context of CH and children's response to CH. Meetings are recorded and transcribed by the researcher. In keeping with the social constructionist approach in the study, the participants' own understandings and their own constructed narratives are listened to in the content analysis and will speak in reports of the study.

Results

The procedure used in CH can create challenges for workers and families. When a parent is suspected, the court appoints a lawyer who can decide about the child's participation without parent's knowledge or consent. The lawyer brings the child from school or the child's day care centre to CH. Social workers report difficulties in knowing how to approach and orientate themselves in relation to the children in CH without disturbing the police proceedings. The children return to school or day care centre abandoned by the authorities and meet their parents alone afterwards without knowing their responses or reactions to the child's visit to CH and participating in the police interrogation.

Conclusions

In the on-going study, evidence has emerged indicating that the idea of the social worker involving the child and inviting into partnership, is at risk of being superseded by the priority given in the context of CH to the criminal law proceedings. The importance of the social workers approaching the child, offering support and inviting into partnership, has to be taken into consideration in the collaboration of CH. This is a delicate phase and crucial for if the child is going to invite the social worker into the child's life reaching an understanding from within the child's perspective or not.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015.
Keyword [en]
Social worker, Children's House, Barnahus, CAC, parthership, invitation, dialogue, children
National Category
Health Sciences Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hkr:diva-14430OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hkr-14430DiVA: diva2:845460
Conference
9th BASPCAN International Congress 12th – 15th April 2015 Univerity of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
Projects
Barn i Barnahus – tvärvetenskaplig studie ur barnperspektiv
Funder
The Kempe Foundations
Available from: 2015-08-11 Created: 2015-08-11 Last updated: 2016-04-01Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

http://www.baspcan.org.uk/congress2015.php

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Olsson, Ann-Margreth E.
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Research Environment Children's and Young People's Health in Social Context (CYPHiSCO)Research Platform for Collaboration for HealthAvdelningen för Ekonomi
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Citation style
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