Before coming to us for any kind of assessment your lawyer, solicitor or local authority will complete a viability assessment. This means they send us an enquiry and complete a referral form, we then assess this to decide whether you are suitable for an assessment.
Residential Assessments are the most common assessment we do at Dudley Lodge, this is when a family moves into one of our centres. Generally, a stay with us lasts from between 4 to 12 weeks. However, on occasion, an assessment can end early if it is not in the best interest of the child to continue.
We understand that moving out of your home and into somewhere new can be very daunting, our staff will help you to feel as comfortable as possible and support you where necessary. Always remember, we’re here to help you and our main aim is always to achieve a positive outcome for you and your family. Read one of our previous resident’s experience about their time at Dudley Lodge and how they have used what they learnt since leaving.
During your stay you’ll be supported by our team through work plans where you will set targets, attend groups, sessions, and have meetings on your progress. To assess your parenting, we have various levels of supervision depending on whether your child is at high risk. Supervision varies from hourly visits, monitoring, and 24-hour surveillance. High supervision will only ever be put in with your permission and the reasons for doing so will be thoroughly explained.
Sometimes residential or community assessments are not suitable for some families. In this case families will visit one of our centres over a number of weeks to allow staff to observe them and to complete pieces of work.
We have many years’ experience working with parents who have learning difficulties. We know that these parents need a different level of assessment to other parents. In order to support, encourage and help these parents as much as possible we provide a PAMS assessment to decipher the specific areas of your parenting that require support. Based on this assessment we then go on to use specific techniques to help you in your assessment like: breaking down tasks, demonstrating tasks, addressing issues in small steps, and use of visual aids.
To find out more about our assessments or to enquire about one, contact our referrals manager Helen Brookes on: 02476 502 800
What is an assessment?
An assessment is a way of learning about your parenting skills and ability to safely care for your child. The information collected during the assessment will be used to make recommendations about your child’s future.
How will you assess my parenting skills?
Each family has different needs, but when working with you our aim is to ensure the best outcome for your child is achieved. Our assessment is led by your family’s individual ‘Assessment Requirements’ (as identified by your placing Local Authority), and before or shortly after you move into the centre a Placement Plan meeting will take place, to allow everyone involved to talk about your assessment and its purpose.
The Dudley Lodge assessment is based on the ‘Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families’ and looks at:
- The child’s developmental needs;
- Parenting Capacity;
- The wider family and environmental factors.
Each family is allocated a Case Manager, who along with Family Assessment Workers will complete a range of direct individual work, group work and daily observations.
Who can have an assessment and what are the reasons for completing one?
Dudley Lodge work with lots of families, all with different needs and from a diverse range of backgrounds. Families complete assessments for lots of different reasons, including:
- Domestic Violence
- Substance misuse
- Chaotic parenting/lifestyles
- Additional learning needs
- History of Social Care involvement
- Difficulty in meeting your child’s needs
However, the list above is only an example of referral concerns, and the reason for completing an assessment is different for each family. Therefore when deciding a family’s suitability for an assessment we will look at individual circumstances, and provide an assessment suitable for each individual.