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Additional Services

Fostered Family
Parenting assessments

Whilst you and your child(ren) access a First Steps Fostering placement, First Steps Fostering may be required to assist the Local Authority in completing tailored pieces of work/ assessments to explore how you meet the needs of your child(ren) .
A parenting assessment is used to help professionals understand your knowledge-base in caring for your child(ren). The assessment itself considers lots of different area’s
of parenting such as your child’s development, their day to day needs and recognising and responding to risk. The assessment will look at what you may be doing well, and or area’s where you may benefit from additional support or learning to ensure the safety and wellbeing of your child(ren) .  

If First Steps fostering are required to complete a parenting assessment of you, a plan of work will be agreed between First Steps Fostering and the Local Authority in line with the areas of worry. This plan will be shared with you so you know what will be happening  during each session. For example, we will complete observations of you caring for your child(ren) . There will also be an opportunity for you to use a session as you wish, to focus on a particular area of parenting or to discuss a period in your life. Through the assessment, you will receive weekly written updates of the sessions completed and areas you need to improve on.  This ensures that at the earliest opportunity, there is focus on bringing about positive change with the support of the placement. In addition, we will highlight the things you are doing well and build upon the skills you already have. The parenting assessment itself take between 6-9 weeks. You will receive a copy of the assessment when completed and will have the opportunity to discuss the outcome of the assessment in depth with the assessor. 

It is possible that the outcome of the assessment will see First Steps Fostering developing a learning plan to develop areas of your parenting. Following the completion of the learning, there may be a period of re assessment to look at how things have improved and what this may mean for the future of your child(ren).

PAMS assessment: Parenting Assessment Manual

A PAM’s assessment is a parenting assessment specially designed for parents who have learning needs, mental health needs and or have experienced significant trauma. The model uses pictures and work sheets to better understand how you parent your child(ren) and areas that you   may need support in.​ 

Family time  


Family time is incredibly important in supporting your child(ren) to develop a sense of identity. Through accessing a first steps Fostering placement, your child(ren) may be separated from a parent and or extended family. Should family time be ordered by the court, First Steps Fostering may be in apposition to support safe family time taking place to enable your child to have meaningful contact with family which is supervised.  Once family time has taken place, First Steps Fostering will ensure that your child(ren)’s Social Worker is sent a written log of the Family time and ensure that any concerns are raised. Your child(ren)'s Social Worker will be able to provide you with updates. As a parent, should there be anything pressing that you need to be made aware of, this will be shared with you when your child is returned to your care following family time taking place. 

Domestic abuse programme  


In a relationship, you may be experiencing/ have experienced domestic abuse which sees/saw risk being posed to you and your  child(ren). Whilst accessing a First Steps Fostering placement, you may have the opportunity, if directed by the responsible Local Authority to access a First Steps Fostering domestic abuse programme. 1:1 tailored support is available to develop your understanding in specific areas such as: 

• Forms of abuse 

• Recognising and responding to risk

• Self-esteem and confidence

• The impact of domestic abuse on children

• Positive relationships

The aim of the programme is to develop your knowledge-base to support good decision making and reduce the risk a relationship/ future relationships pose to your child(ren).

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