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Individual Care
for young people

Staff provide a placement that offers assessment with good support, praise and respect for families.

Family Guardian

Outreach and family support

One Step at a Time offers Intensive Family Support packages for families in Berkshire who are struggling to parent their children.

These challenges may be for a range of reasons, such as lack of knowledge, experience or satisfactory role models, a lack of resources or opportunity, learning disabilities, domestic abuse or family breakdown. Whether young parents, single parents or couples, they may need practical support or reassurance, to learn skills and develop new ways of dealing with situations, or to acknowledge differences without feeling failure.

Our staff has a wealth of experience in supporting parents to raise their parenting skills to being ‘good enough’. This involves working intensively with the entire family, either in the Unit or in their own home.

Our Family Support package has been designed to help:

  • Change attitudes
  • Improve parenting and coping skills
  • Increase knowledge and understanding
  • Empower parents and improve their confidence and self-esteem
  • Build family relationships
  • Recognise parents’ own needs
  • Raise children’s self-esteem
  • Improve the family’s quality of life
  • Promote positive parenting
  • Share views, ideas and information with others

It may also help to change parents’ and children’s behaviour, become more child-centred and understand and respect their needs, manage difficult behaviour, encourage parents to value and praise their children, develop problem solving skills, prevent abuse, improve home-school links and enable parents to look after their own lives and families in ‘another way’.

Bespoke packages may offer up to six months of intensive work with families with multiple, complex or serious needs around areas such as housing, relationships, health and wellbeing, expectant mother support, money management, follow-up support and home-based family support services, maintaining links and top-up sessions if required on a spot purchase basis, and a parent helpline provision.

Frequently, young parents are placed for assessment who may be care leavers or have had significant involvement with social care throughout their own childhood. Often, they are initially reluctant to join the programme, but many, with the right support, become good parents and their child can remain in their care. One such parent commented, “Thank you all for welcoming me to One Step at a Time in the manner in which you did; I don’t know if I would have been here still if staff didn’t persuade me with their words of wisdom. It has been very hard but I am still here and I got my baby. This experience has made me grow as a mother, woman and person, I thank you all.”

Outreach and family assessment – Case study

Names have been changed to protect identities.

Becoming a parent is a huge responsibility and comes with its own set of challenges. Sometimes young parents, often those who have been in care themselves, are placed for assessment.

Our programme has been specially designed to keep new parents afloat when starting out on this rewarding journey.

Families are given their own flat and although they are monitored, this is done discreetly and without much interference. We do our best to offer help, advice and support throughout the duration of the placement.

In most cases these service users become very good parents and the child remains in their care.

Michelle, a young parent, was very pleased with her placement. “It has been very hard but I am still here and I got my baby” she said, “This experience has made me grow as a mother, woman and person.”


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