Lanarkshire set to get it right for children
Published Monday, 20 June 2011
A Getting it Right event to give children and young people the best start in life is taking place tomorrow.
The event on Tuesday 21 from 9.30am in the council's Banqueting Hall in Almada Street, Hamilton, will mark the full implementation phase of the Scottish Government's Getting it Right for every child (Girfec).
The national programme now being translated into practice is designed to ensure parents, carers and professionals work together to improve young people's opportunities in life and give them the best start possible.
North and South Lanarkshire Councils together with NHS Lanarkshire are hosting the event which is being attended by the Minister for Children and Young People, Angela Constance. She said: "If we get the early years right, it will prevent children from ending up on the wrong track in life and help support successful futures."
At the heart of the initiative is a determination to make sure every young person is safe, healthy, achieving, nurtured, active, respected, responsible and included.
A high standard has been set with the aim of achieving three main objectives:
- Develop a culture where employees in all the agencies involved in children's lives know each other well, have positive relationships and work well together with children's interests at the centre
- Introduce single systems so all the agencies use the same style of records, speak the same language and avoid needless duplication.
- Change practice and implement all the principles of Getting it Right by building this approach into all their plans and providing extensive training for staff.
Depute Leader of South Lanarkshire Council, Councillor Jackie Burns, said: "When you speak to employees about Getting it Right - there's a real enthusiasm for how it's going. It's been a huge amount of work, but people are finding that many of the tools developed over the past few years are really useful."
To put Getting it Right into practice a 'toolkit' providing everything that has been learned so far - including a full library of all the resources - will be available on the day to help people working in health, education and social work support individual children whatever their needs, whether they need a bit of short term help with their growth and development or whether their lives are more complex, featuring parental substance issues, mental health problems or severe disabilities
The chair of Children's Services Partnership Board and North Lanarkshire Council Convener of Housing and Social Work Services, Cllr Barry McCulloch, said: "They key to its success is the introduction of a common system which will go a long way to ensure delivery of services to children and young people so they have every opportunity to develop.
And Neena Mahal, vice chair of NHS Lanarkshire, added: "The toolkit will help staff from all agencies work together to support children from the earliest possible point, not responding to the consequences later on. From our midwives and public health nurses to playgroup leaders, partnership nurseries, early years' education staff and social workers - as well as our partners in the voluntary sector - working together will make a difference for Lanarkshire's children."