Working Residentially with Looked After Children

Working Residentially with Looked after Children

Deputy Manager
I am the Deputy Manager of a small residential unit for up to six young people (male) aged between 13-17yrs on admission in North Yorkshire. The Statement of Purpose specifies that the unit is to offer medium to long term care. The provision is specifically for young men who exhibit emotional and behavioural difficulties. There are three distinct strands to the service; therapy, education and care. I have direct line management responsibility of a staff team which consists of three Senior staff, three full time residential care workers, and three part time residential care workers. Tasks associated to meet the objectives are Supervision (group, in regular staff meetings, informal and formal), case planning, monitor service delivery, management of the staff rota and attendance, shift planning, maintain good communication. All tasks are mutually agreed and delegated by the units registered Manager. Working as a manager does present a different perspective to the task at hand and contrasts significantly to my previous role as a residential care worker/keyworker. Having to look in two (or more) directions at once, combining information obtained due to daily contact with direct practice and having a responsibility to contribution to the strategic work of the wider organisation. Managing the primary tasks and activities of the unit I feel I have a key role in determining whether standards of practice are consistently maintained. The position also presents some degree of conflict between the need to integrate the skills of management with the knowledge and judgement of an experienced practitioner. Operating in a highly fluid environment, managing a staff group in daily contact with the stress and anxieties and uncertainty of users and carers. Although the post is the first time I have designated responsibility for managing

the collective effort of a team as well as individuals' performance, I feel it...