Hello again – it’s been a while but work has been hectic. As I’ve said previously I’m always amazed at how much we get up to in our jobs and how we manage to balance it all. Last week was a typical example – as well as day time work covering supervisions, meetings (and more meetings) around NEETS, Service Level Agreements, Condom distribution, Sex and Relationships education, joint working with Children and Family centres, looking at some potential overseas work in India and senior management discussions I was also out for three evenings meeting with some of our voluntary youth centres management committees, going to an AGM for West Sussex Council for Voluntary Youth Services and attending a Duke of Edinburghs Award presentation. At all of these meetings there were interesting discussions and follow up points to be be taken forward……it’s just managing my time to ensure that the ideas do get taken forward.
One of my best meetings / discussions last week was inpromptu and happened after one of the evening meetings. We have a lot of youth issues in one of our rural villages at the moment. Periodically these issues raise their head, everyone gets steamed up (particularly the parish council), we have to do member reports and feedback and then they will settle for a little while only to rise again some short distance into the future as the real issues have never been addressed. This has been happening off and on for the past 3 years.
we’re hoping to do something about it by running a pilot for Targeted Youth Support there. I know that many services have already developed their Targeted Youth Support (TYS) service which look at developing new models of integrated working for young people at risk and those in need of additional support. We have lots of examples of how we deliver this work across the county through the youth service but we’re looking at how we can do this more consistently and how we formulate policies, models and understanding of shared working and responsibilities.
Corporately we have moved to developing Integerated Service Delivery Areas (ISDAs) in 8 areas of the county. The purpose of the ISDAs according to county policy is to ‘provide wrap around, integrated support services for children and their families, particularly for those with additional needs and complex needs, and a single gateway to access these services’. Many of the local authority services have been restructured and merged into the ISDAs something along the lines of how Andy Smith describes his work in his blog (TASCC Youthworker Blog) where their TASCCs resemble our ISDAs. “TASCC which stands for Team Around Schools, Children and Communities… are new multi discipline teams of County based staff including EWO’s, CAMHS workers, Behaviour support and social care staff.”
In practice these are quite complex delivery models and as they are rolling out in West Sussex seem to be focussing on the younger age range and families. Currently West Sussex Youth Service sits outside of these structures but with links through our team leaders as well as Senior Managers for strategic planing and delivery. Consequently we are able to look at our own model / s for Targeted Youth Support services.
I like this idea as we are able to focus mainly on the young people and their issues and look at how we effectively engage them to identify what it is that they need and work as a group to see how we can access this. The difference between the TYS and ISDAs is also that we are looking at predominantly group based approaches. Or at least…..that’s what we’re thinking at the moment!!! Now we need to put it all together and see how we can make it work!