UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Other people’s children and the critical role of the social service workforce

Desmond, Chris; Watt, Kathryn; Tomlinson, Mark; Williamson, John; Sherr, Lorraine; Sullivan, Margaret; Cluver, Lucie; (2022) Other people’s children and the critical role of the social service workforce. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies , 17 (2) pp. 97-109. 10.1080/17450128.2022.2040762. Green open access

[thumbnail of Sherr_Other people’s children and the critical role of the social service workforce_AAM.pdf]
Preview
Text
Sherr_Other people’s children and the critical role of the social service workforce_AAM.pdf

Download (587kB) | Preview

Abstract

Understanding the needs of your child is complicated. Understanding the varied needs of a population of children with whom you have no direct contact is the near impossible challenge policy makers, government planners and donors face when making policy or selecting interventions to fund and implement. They cannot unpack children’s individual needs and so must predict what is most important for a given population and which services to prioritise. This can be simplified by assuming that the needs of other people’s children are hierarchical: basic needs, such as food and shelter, must be met before considering higher-order needs. This conceptualisation justifies a focus on basic needs and decision makers can ignore higher-order needs and the complex interventions they may require, because both are assumed to be of secondary importance. Assuming a hierarchy of needs is a mistake. By drawing on examples from the literature, we outline how children, our own and other people’s, have non-hierarchical needs and thus caring for them is a balancing act, best done by those close to them. This conceptualisation highlights the importance of supporting families to support children. For a subset of families who are struggling, additional family strengthening interventions may be needed. In the relatively rare cases that such interventions are insufficient as family function is severely compromised, more intensive interventions may be necessary, but must be undertaken with great care and skill. Social services are critical because they have the potential to facilitate the intensive interventions when they are required, and while they are not required by all, for some of the most vulnerable children they are essential. The quality standards of such a service will be key in meeting the needs of other people’s children.

Type: Article
Title: Other people’s children and the critical role of the social service workforce
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/17450128.2022.2040762
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/17450128.2022.2040762
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
Keywords: Social services workforce strengthening, child and youth work, intervention, child protection
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health > Infection and Population Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10153687
Downloads since deposit
44Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item