Compass Outreach Service
The Compass Outreach Service is a partnership between The Benjamin Foundation, Norfolk and Suffolk (NHS) Foundation Trust (NSFT) and Norfolk County Council. It provides therapeutic and intensive family support services to families who have been referred by Children's Services. We employ a team of Family Development Workers who work as part of the team alongside NSFT staff providing this support.
Originally developed with a £1.2million Innovations Fund grant from the Department of Education in April 2015, it aims to reduce the levels of need and risk for children who are currently looked after and those considered to be on the ‘edge of care'. We firmly believe that children should remain in their local communities and that there should be sufficiently robust and creative services to meet the complex needs of vulnerable young people.
The Compass Approach is based on the clinical application of attachment theory, supporting families and professionals by working with them to achieve meaningful and sustainable change. This requires therapeutic interventions from staff who are provided with the training and supervision necessary to help families understand the obstacles and to progress and accept their responsibility for overcoming these. For this to be possible professionals need to have the levels of skill and self-awareness to get alongside families who are often understandably mistrustful of services. It is also crucial that professionals recognise the extent to which their own approach to building these relationships has a huge impact on the outcomes of the intervention offered.
Our staff share the Nurtured Heart Approach® (NHA) with families referred to Compass Outreach Service to help children, young people and parents understand their unique greatness; increase self-esteem; improve self-confidence and ultimately to help strengthen family relationships. This approach also strengthens team relationships by helping staff to give each other purposeful positive recognition.
Many of the families we are working with have provided us with feedback about the benefits of the Compass Outreach Service:
"They have gone out of their way to help me"
"I am so pleased to have had support from Compass Outreach Service and I can now see a future where I will no longer need Children's Services involvement and we can just be a family".
"Compass focus on everyone else. They don't just focus on the child. They focus on home"
"I feel much more confident. And confident to make mistakes as well"
The Compass Outreach Team recently attended the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Putting People First Awards 2016 to read how they did and what the judges had to say about the work they do please click HERE.