Paul’s story

Paul was referred to the PAGE project for ‘Independent Advocacy Support’, by a local law firm as he navigated ongoing care proceedings where Paul and his partner were being assessed to see if their daughter could be safely returned to their care. 

Paul and his partner have older children whom are in Foster Care and they have regular supervised contact with them, and the child concerned was subjected to an ‘Interim Care Order’ due to neglect. During the proceedings Paul had a Cognitive Functioning Assessment which confirmed that Paul has Cognitive Deficits in his verbal reasoning and language skills.  Paul also suffers with poor mental health (anxiety and low moods).    

Paul received regular Advocacy support; this took place at his home, in court, and virtually. The advocate supported Paul to attend relevant meetings, court hearings with children services and also solicitor visits. Paul’s advocate provided support in raising questions during meetings/court hearings with professionals, helping him to express his needs and wishes and to have his voice heard. He very often felt that people were making decisions about his life and he had no control over what was happening. Paul also received Advocacy support in understanding documents that were presented to him by Children’s Trust and Solicitors.  During our intervention Paul built a positive and trusting relationship with his advocate. He was able to discuss the issue of having lack of funds to purchase basic essentials. In order to ensure he got through this difficult period he was referred to a local food bank. The advocate collected his first parcel for him as he felt ashamed that he required such support.

Paul said that this service helped improve his confidence during meetings with professionals, and he felt he could raise questions and express his wishes and feelings.  Paul told us told us having an Independent Advocate supported him to understand documents presented to him by professionals, and he was able to have a better understanding on the language used by Children Services and professionals during meetings/court hearings. Both parents met all actions required by Sandwell Children’s Trust, which included completely a parenting program, PAM’s assessment, engaging with mental health and counselling services.  This has helped the family move forward having positive outcomes for the child and their future.

Paul is now in part time employment and has taken up football as a hobby. Both parents are accessing a weekly Food Bank Pantry where they can purchase a range of items for a minimum amount of money.  Both parents are accessing their local Children Centre and attending a Baby Group with their child. The families case has been de-escalated from an ‘Interim Care Order’ to ‘Child Protection Plan’ and is now a ‘Child In Need Plan’.  The child has now returned back home to be with both their parents, and a 12-month supervision order is in place for the child. They have a future together as a family and are no longer too ashamed or closed off to ask for support.

You gave me confidence to attend my meetings and in court. I wouldn’t have known what was going on if you hadn’t explained it to me. You read through my documents and helped me understand them and what was going to happen next. You helped me when I couldn’t afford food and other stuff, you never judged. We can now be all together, as a family.

Paul

Delivery Partners

Parents Advocacy, Guidance and Empowerment (PAGE)

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The PAGE project supports parents with learning disabilities and/or autism who are subject to, or at at risk of interventions from Children’s Services. We offer independent advocacy and independent living skills training, providing one-to-one support which is bespoke to the individual. Eligible parents can access one or both services to suit their needs, and their situation.

Project Funded By:

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Our partners

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