New research project to explore leadership activity across Scotland's social services

23 September 2010

During September and October a partnership of University of Stirling, Scottish Consortium for Learning Disability, the Service User and Carer Forum and the Voluntary Sector Social Services Workforce Unit will be gathering views and information about leadership within social services in Scotland. It will be contacting organisations and individuals to ask for their involvement in this work

Later in September the project will be looking for responses via an electronic survey and hope that as many people as possible will find time to share their views on leadership at all levels in Scottish social services.

For more details of this interesting new project download the information sheet.

Grampian Police Return Home Welfare Interview Pilot for Young Runaways: Pilot Evaluation

15 September 2010

The aim of the evaluation carried out by University of Stirling and Ipsos MORI Scotland was to explore the most effective means for delivering Return Home Welfare Interviews (RHWIs). It set out to examine the operation of the pilot as implemented in Aberdeen City and Elgin, to reflect the range of models of delivery used and the overall impact of the pilot. The report describes the differences between the RHWI and the practice of noting cancellation details which the RHWIs replace in the two pilot areas. The principal conclusion of the evaluation is that RHWIs are an appropriate intervention, helping identify young people who require further support and referring them to an appropriate agency.

To view the report in full go to the website

Scottish Government launch new campaign to recruit volunteers for Children's Panels

15 September 2010

The Scottish Government is seeking to recruit new volunteers to the Children's Panels, the independent lay tribunals that are a crucial part of the Children's Hearings system, which is Scotland's distinctive approach to dealing with children and young people who are in trouble or at risk.

To get an idea of the skills required and the work of the panel visit the website at

Here you can try the interactive quiz to see if The Children's Panel is a good match for you or read the case studies to find out how the Children's Hearings System has changed lives. The campaign runs until 1 October 2010.

Audit Scotland publishes report on children in residential care in Scotland

15 September 2010

Around 1,600 children and young people are living in residential care at any one time. They are some of the most vulnerable people in society and many have very complex and challenging needs. The report highlights that although some children thrive many have poor educational attainment and experience major problems as adults, such as unemployment, homelessness, spending time in prison and mental health problems. Audit Scotland recognised that councils are working on becoming better ‘corporate parents’, with support from the Scottish Government. However, there still needs to be a greater emphasis on the long-term outcomes and life chances of children in residential care. The report found many children’s care plans lack clear action points and long-term goals.

From the Accounts Commission and Auditor General the report published today, Getting it right for children in residential care, says councils need a better understanding of the costs involved, so they can consider how their services provide value for money and possible efficiencies.

For more information on the report visit the website or download the full report and key messages

Centre for Rural Childhood launches Pg Cert in Socio/legal issues of childhood

15 September 2010

Based on a commitment to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Centre will: undertake research and consultancy on rural childhood; offer teaching and training courses at undergraduate and postgraduate levels; offer continuing professional development and other professional training opportunities; meet the highest academic standards and contribute to policy and practice through evidence-based research. It will also engage in the Building a Europe for Children agenda set by the Council of Europe.

The Pg cert in Socio/legal issues of childhood is offered by online learning, supported by staff from the Centre for Rural Childhood. Starting in January 2011 the Certificate blends the theoretical background of socio/legal issues of childhood with its practical implementation in a variety of contemporary settings.

For more information on the Centre visit the website at

For course details email or call 01738 877506.

Free access to sample copy of Child and Family Social Work journal

15 September 2010

Child & Family Social Work publishes original and distinguished contributions on matters of research, theory, policy and practice in the field of social work with children and their families. The Journal gives international definition to the discipline and practice of child and family social work.

The free sample includes a number of exciting articles such as:

  • 'Women's abuse of their children in the context on domestic violence: reflection from women's accounts' From Dominique Damant, Simon Lapierre, Catherine Lebossé, Sylvie Thibault, Geneviève Lessard, Louise Hamelin-Brabant, Chantal Lavergne, and Andrée Fortin

  • ‘School was just a nightmare’: childhood abuse and neglect and school experiences' By John Frederick and Chris Goddard

  • 'The relationship between non-marital fathers' social networks and social capital and father involvement ' From Jason T. Castillo and Ashley Fenzl-Crossman

The view all the articles and book reviews in the free sample visit the journal website at

NHS Scotland publishes consultation with children and young people on a draft framework for children and young people's mental health indicators

15 September 2010

Commissioned as part of a wider consultation on a draft framework, 'Checking it out' included groups of children and young people whose views on what impacts on their mental health appear to be absent or poorly represented in the previous research.

The report by Susan Elsley and Christina McMellon, Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, Edinburgh University, is available online at

For more information about the development of the framework for the children and young people's mental health indicators visit the website

Any queries regarding this work and the mental health indicators work should be directed by email to Jane Parkinson on jane.parkinson@nhs,net

Scottish Government launches consultation on regulations relating to the establishment of SCSWIS and HIS

15 September 2010

This consultation allows people to give us their views on the regulations which are to be made under the PSR Act to enable SCSWIS and HIS to be operational on 1 April 2011.

These regulations have been drafted to give SCSWIS and HIS the flexibility to take a proportionate, evidence and risk-based approach to scrutiny within the new regulatory regime set out in the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010 and have been informed by the operational experience of the Care Commission, SWIA, HMIE and NHSQIS. The general thrust of the regulations is to leave as much as possible of SCSWIS's and HIS's day-to-day operation to their discretion and not to be overly-prescriptive. As such, much of what is set out in these regulations will be familiar to regulated services.

This consultation seeks your views on the proposed secondary legislation in relation to:

  • Applications and registrations;

  • Fees;

  • Inspections and Joint Inspections;

  • Reports; and

  • Requirements.

This consultation is one part of the process to have the regulations agreed and in place for the new bodies' establishment in April 2011. The Scottish Government will consider all the responses to this consultation when finalising the regulations. The deadline for responses to this consultation is Friday 5 November 2010.

To comment on as many or as few of these regulations as you wish visit the website

HALE Autumn courses for practitioners and service users.

15 September 2010

The new HALE brochure contains details of courses suitable for professionals and for service users, informal carers, volunteers and other members of the public. The courses should be of interest to those working in and those receiving assistance from social care, health care and education services in community and institutional settings.

Download the Autumn 2010 brochure here for full details on the following courses for practitioners:

  • Best Practice in Risk Assessment & Risk Management Adults and Older People or Child Care & Child Protection

  • Advanced Skils for Adult Protection & Personalisation of Budgets & Services

Courses for Service Users & People at Risk of Harm:

  • Positive Risk Taking

  • Health Literacy

  • Messengers for Health

HALE also run multi-agency open-training course at venues across the country details of these can be found on the HALE web site