Presentation on theme: "Implementing children's policy - the whole child challenge 6 th March, 2008 Elizabeth Canavan Office of the Minister for Children."— Presentation transcript:
Implementing children's policy - the whole child challenge 6 th March, 2008 Elizabeth Canavan Office of the Minister for Children
What is the whole child perspective? A way of seeing that: Gives a child’s eye view; Recognises that children shape their own lives as they grow, while also being shaped and supported by the world around them; Takes account of the child (nature) and the environment within which it exists (nurture). … and facilitates the development of policy and services that that take into account the needs, rights and interests of children
This perspective is informed and underpinned by - The work of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child Social Ecology (Bronfenbrenner, 1979) – a model of development that situates the child in a socio-cultural context, and Ward (outcomes of children’s lives, 1998).
Whole child perspective has 3 broad domains – Children’s innate capacity – further divided into 9 dimensions, including family relationships, physical and mental well being, identity, intellectual capacity etc. Children’s relationships Formal and informal supports
Taking a whole child approach means: focusing on the big picture, on the child’s whole life and circumstances and the links between individual issues and other aspects of their lives focusing from the outset on what children need for healthy development and wellbeing looking across the whole public service at what can be done to support children’s healthy development considering multi-level interventions in the settings of family, friends and peers, school and the wider community viewing children as having valuable knowledge to contribute to developing and evaluating policies and services that affect them considering ways in which children can be involved in decision- making on issues that affect them.
Implications of WCP for Policy? Evidence-based practice with a focus on the nine dimensions and their inter-relationships Formal and informal supports at the right time Good co-ordination between and within services Consultation and participation.
The Story So Far…..? (An OMC view) Policy National Children’s Strategy Life-cycle approach – Towards 2016 HSE context – Agenda for Children’s Services Irish Youth Justice Strategy Emerging integrated services thinking – early years, models such as jigsaw, incredible years, primary care teams Structures NCO=>OMC National Children’s Advisory Council National Children’s Strategy Implementation Group Children’s Services Committees Individual innovative projects at local level
Making innovation “mainstream” – a contradiction in terms? Is the WCP leading us to the right processes / right models? If so, how can we gather and maintain momentum for WCP? What needs to change to accommodate this approach ? What are the issues? How to we mainstream the thinking? How do we mainstream the models?