From a parent attending Filial Therapy
Testimonial from SchoolsThank you for the inset you delivered yesterday …It was an excellent session for us and the feedback from staff has been really positive, all felt it was extremely helpful and illuminating.We will be looking as a staff to discuss the issues you raised and hope we can work with you in the future. (April 2013)
Testimonials from parents who
attended Fostering Attachments Course
‘I wish I had known…
…about this BEFORE I adopted my children – I would still have done it but I would have understood what was happening’ A.B. Jenkins
‘A really fun, friendly and hugely useful course…
…which has changed our lives! We were looking at our son going back into care and felt that we were doing it all on our own – now we can hardly remember just how bad it was!’ E.D.
‘It was so good…
…to be with someone who understood my daughter – without meeting her. This training was fun, informative and a deep emotional journey. Thank goodness for the humour and support – Great great training!’ A.B.J.
‘I have struggled for years with my 2 adopted sons…
…and thought if I loved them enough all would be good. The last 2 of the 6 years have been the hardest – It didn’t matter what I said or did – I was always wrong – NOW I understand what is happening!’ G.Elliot
‘I dragged my husband along and I’m so glad I did!
We have learnt more today about why our son behaves the way he does than we have in the 5 years he’s been with us’ B.E.
Testimonials from “Growing Attachments”
training delivered to social workers
Imagine how fantastic our sevice could be if everyone attended this training …
… We really need to understand how important attachment is to looked after children, adopted children and their families
‘Thought provoking and enjoyable ….
…I have really enjoyed this – looking forward to developing and challenging my practice.’
Facilitators ensured that all in attendance were active participants…
…They gave time for sensitive material to be absorbed before moving on. They were ok with questions and challenges (made appropriately)’
‘Excellent course – very powerful’
‘Excellent training – all staff in social care should participate in this training …
… I will now reflect on the role of the foster carer rather than the parents. I work with foster carers and do not usually empathize with their situations – impact of trying to care for traumatized children who are not members of their birth families’
‘This course has been excellent and inspiring…
and has given vast amounts of information which will be relevant to my work … excellent facilitators – great knowledge and ability to share that knowledge in a way that has kept me engaged, and helped me to understand. Looking forward to the next stage – thank you’
‘I have really enjoyed this course and it has given me a lot to think about …
…Excellent training overall and there is definitely a need for all staff carrying out assessment/undertaking direct work with children and families to have an understanding of attachment theory’
‘This training needs to be delivered to foster carers and schools…
… I have learnt more on this course than I ever learnt in my Social Work training
‘Best training that I have so far attended’
A fantastic course which will be invaluable to my work with families…
… It has been very interactive and plenty of opportunities to discuss and reflect on my practice’
A detailed account from a foster carer
who attended Fostering Attachments
I did this course because I truly felt I needed to!!
Since coming into fostering and experiencing behaviours that I had never had in my home before I had been looking for something that could truly help me to understand some of the behaviours displayed by looked after children.
Although I knew these behaviours existed (not having any regard or understanding of peoples’ property, not having any boundaries, not understanding what is socially acceptable etc.) I had never been responsible for someone who behaved in this way and certainly never had it in my home.
I wanted to understand where these behaviours came from in the child as I realised there was more to it than not having had any discipline, or boundaries at home. How could a young child feel so worthless and not care at all about what anyone might think of them? How can a child have so little respect for authority, themselves and indeed anyone else? How can they have no empathy?
These were things I didn’t really understand and I certainly didn’t know how to change them. How do you give a child self esteem without understanding why they have none? Yes, of course, a lot of these behaviours are learnt (or so we’re led to believe) but how do we change it?
I did a very basic course with The Annex Project first of all but it was life changing for me. I had so many light bulb moments and really started to have some understanding of why the children behaved as they did (notice past tense!!) and was desperate to learn more. Not just about the theory but also about the practicalities.
Anne Marie told me about the course she was doing which included the attachment theory I had done but also about using the PACE approach to helping children with their feelings and behaviour.
Of course, having done the attachment course I had very high expectations!! And I wasn’t disappointed. The Course was both theoretical and practical. It was at times very thought provoking. We had handouts every week and also some practical homework.
Video clips were also used and a lot of discussion. It was the discussion that was very interesting for me. I learnt so much about other peoples experiences and Anne Marie would explain why the child may be behaving in this way AND what to do about it. No one was ever made to feel stupid or uncomfortable and we became a very close group. In fact we still meet up to share our experiences and to offer support.
When you are living in a family, it is very easy to get caught up in everything that’s going on and when you’re running late and nothings been done and everyone wants you to do things, (in the plural), for them it is very difficult to stay calm and not lose it!!!! (what ever it may be)
The course teaches you to use PACE, which is an easy acronym to remember; Playful; Accepting; Curious and Empathic approach to parenting children with attachment difficulties.
Whenever I’m feeling that I might just be about to lose it, PACE comes to my mind and I take a step back and have a little think.
I think my family have benefitted from the course, as I not only have more understanding of the behaviours and challenges the child displays, but have been able to explain more to the schools as to why the child may be behaving as He /She is and how to get the best out of the child. This has definitely worked for my older child foster child. His college completely changed the way they were with him and it has had a great result. He is now attending all his lectures, doing the work he is supposed to and I have been to a parents evening where I have actually heard positives about this child.( A first for him, so we were all very happy). One of his teachers even thanked me for taking time to help him understand the child and said that the child’s behaviour and attitude had completely changed and that the child was now doing very well, rather than being asked to leave the lesson.
For myself, I had been searching for a course like this since I started fostering 6 years ago. I haven’t been on any other course that has given me so much to think about, light bulb moments and inspiration.
I am not and have never been an academic person and once the lesson was finished that would be it. I’d leave the room and not think about it again.
With the Fostering attachments course I have bought six books and come home to start trawling the internet to find out about different things that may have been mentioned during the course and been able to relate them to the child/children.
I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of this course (even the bits I’d done before) and was very sad (as we all were) when it came to an end.
At the beginning you think that the course is going to be long and drawn out but when you’re there the time goes really quickly.
One of the things I really valued about the course was that everyone was allowed to speak if they wanted to. Peoples concerns were listened to and addressed without going off the subject and keeping within the allotted time. We all appreciated that we were given that time to voice our concerns and often how inadequate we felt to deal with certain issues, and how to manage them in a very practical way.
This course is important for Foster carers and Adoptive parents to do, as we have expectations of these children that they more often than not, cannot reach. I had very high expectations of the children as they are very bright and clever and I couldn’t understand why they weren’t doing better, in most aspects of their lives.
This course taught me why.