Empowering parents whose children are subjected to care proceedings: A qualitative investigation into practitioners experiences

Jones, Stephanie and Wagner, Jessica and Randall, Jason and Tsaroucha, Anna (2016) Empowering parents whose children are subjected to care proceedings: A qualitative investigation into practitioners experiences. The Journal of New Writing in Health and Social Care, 2 (2).

Empowering parents (Final) (003).docx_tcm44-91494.pdf

Download (322kB)


There has been a shift in recent years in care proceedings with parental empowerment being seen as a fundamental anti-oppressive social work value (Smith 2010). Research has suggested that although empowerment is often the objective the family may not feel this is achieved. Giovanini (2011) Sykes et al (2002) and Sinclair & Wilson (2009) looked at the experiences of birth parents during care proceedings. A key theme of the literature was that parents felt that social workers had not been helpful during the process, in terms of sharing information and offering support and advice. Therefore, this research focused on practitioners’ views of their ability to empower whilst working with parents. The objective was to explore practitioners’ experiences of attempting to empower parents of children undergoing care proceedings. Six semi-structured one-to-one interviews were undertaken. Participants were practitioners currently working in the care proceedings. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using thematic analysis. The practitioners reported that every effort is made to empower family members in care proceedings but felt that numerous barriers exist that hinder this resulting to the disengagement of many of the families. Further, practitioners highlighted that their key goal was to support the child and as such they did not have the capacity to continually chase families. The research suggests that in order to empower parents, a true partnership approach is necessary. This may not always be possible within care proceedings as the primary focus is, and must be, safeguarding the child.

Item Type: Article
1 July 2016Published
1 May 2016Accepted
Subjects: CAH15 - social sciences > CAH15-04 - health and social care > CAH15-04-01 - social work
Divisions: Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences > School of Education and Social Work
Depositing User: Jessica Wagner
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2019 07:58
Last Modified: 03 Mar 2022 15:55
URI: https://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/7544

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


In this section...