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28th February 2012 Croke Park, Dublin. Presentation by Fergus Finlay, CEO PowerPoint Presentation
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28th February 2012 Croke Park, Dublin. Presentation by Fergus Finlay, CEO. Our Children – Our Past. Our Children – Our Present. 1,107,034. What’s going well?. Where are the fault lines?. Children will have a voice Children will be understood Children will be supported.

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Presentation Transcript

Our Children – Our Present


What’s going


Where are the fault lines?


Children will have a voice

Children will be understood

Children will be supported

National Children’s Strategy

Safe from accidental and intentional harm/Secure in the immediate and wider physical environment

Part of positive networks of family, friends, neighbours and the community /Included and participating in society

National Outcomes for Children

in Ireland

Supported in active learning

Healthy, both physically and mentally

Economically Secure

  • Good physical health
  • Good mental health
  • Good lifestyles (diet, exercise, substance abuse, etc.)
  • Play and leisure opportunities
  • Personal development opportunities
  • Emotional resilience and empathy
  • Good sexual health
  • Protection against child abuse and neglect
  • Protection against crime
  • Housing and shelter
  • A stable living environment
  • Able to manage/ respond to bullying, discrimination and antisocial behaviour
  • Ready for school
  • Good school attendance and participation
  • Literate and numerate
  • Good school results
  • High school standards
  • Encouragement to grow and achieve
  • A caring home environment
  • Influence and voice in our society
  • Rights enshrined in the Constitution
  • An informed and fair justice and courts system
  • Protection from poverty
  • Protection from the impact of poverty
  • A pathway to independence


That means they are / have...


But there are problems …

8.7% of children living in consistent poverty

  • State Policy Towards
  • Children:
  • “ Seen and not heard “
  • Until the 70’s
  • Economic Policy:
  • Role of the state vs Personal Consumption
  • & the Markets
  • Irish spending on Social
  • Protection the lowest in Western Europe
  • Economic Contraction
  • Growth Down 15%
  • Reduced Government Social Spending
  • Child Benefit
  • Social Welfare Payments
  • HSE Budget
  • Education Budget
  • Closure of State Agencies

Systemic Problems

Problems Experienced by Children

Underlying Causes

  • No reference model for developing children’s services
  • Weak information base, with no common system for assessing needs of children or outcomes
  • No resource allocation model for children’s services
  • Structural problems – huge variation in services and standards delivered in different regions
  • Historically, a closed and centralised political culture was no prepared to allow external participation in developing/implementing policy
  • Child abuse and neglect
  • Housing/Homelessness
  • Children unable to thrive in education
  • Poor literacy/numeracy
  • Mental health and well being problems
  • Physical health problems
  • Early school leaving
  • Substance abuse
  • Peer violence/bullying
  • Inability to break out of cycles of disadvantage
  • Historically poor child protection and welfare services
  • Limited implementation of the first National Children’s Strategy
  • Services for children and their families focus on ‘picking up pieces’
  • Unemployment up, now over 15%
  • Wage cuts in public and private sectors
  • Increased budgetary pressures on existing systems and services
  • Reduction in funding for NGOs
  • Increased pressure on services for children and families

Constitutional Change

Child & Family Welfare focused Agency

Director of Children & Family Services

Program for Government

Opportunity to deliver world class services for children & families

New Legislation

National Children’s Strategy

2012 - 2017

Minister for Children


Barnardos’ Vision

National Framework/ Local Architecture delivering continuum of care through interagency working


What All Children Need

Prenatal Care

Family Planning

Antenatal Care

-9 months

18 years

Public Health Nurse Visits

0 years

Youth Clubs

Pre-school/ Community Crèche/ Playgroup

2 years

15 years

Secondary school

11 years

5 years

Primary School

Sports/ Entertainment Clubs/ Scouts/ Girl Guides

9 years

Afterschool Activities

  • Required Throughout the Continuum (e.g. GPs, etc.)
  • Primary Care Services

When Early Intervention is Needed

Support Service for Parents

Education Welfare Officer/Home School Liaison Officer

HSE Early Intervention Team

-9 months

18 years

Practical Support Services

0 years

Life Skills/Lifestyle Choices/Peer & Family Relationship Support

Targeted Pre-School

2 years

Mentoring Programme

Ready for School Service

(Children & Parents)

15 years

Literacy & Numeracy Support Service

11 years

5 years

Ready for Secondary School

(Children & Parents)

Social/ Emotional Support

9 years

Support to Access out of School


  • Required Throughout the Continuum:
  • Parent Support(1:1) – Home Visits and Centre Based, Parenting Group- Work Programme Mental Health and Wellbeing Support (Children & Parents), Community Development Support, Attachment and Relationship Support

Some Children Need a Crisis Service

Drug & Alcohol Addiction Service

-9 months

18 years

0 years

Family Welfare Conference

2 years

Targeted Pre-School

Wraparound Services

15 years

Care/ Fostering

11 years

5 years

Diversion Programme (Gardai)

9 years

National Education Welfare Service

  • Required Throughout the Continuum:
  • Domestic Violence Services, Child Residential Services (In- Care), Fostering Service, Respite Care, Community Welfare Service, Specialist Therapeutic Services (eg, Bereavement, Sexual Abuse), Family Law Centres, Gardai, Child Protection & Welfare, Homeless Services, Family Support Voluntary Agencies

The Community Hub: A Better Way of Meeting Need

Local Management

Common Assessment Framework

-9 months

18 years

Assessing & Responding to Community Need

0 years

Local Accountability

2 years

15 years

Inter- Agency Cooperation - Protocols

11 years

5 years

Some Services likely to be


National Policy, Local Delivery

9 years