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The ethos is based on the premise that therapy is not separate from the young person's day-to-day life. In order to succeed in changing behaviours we have developed an holistic therapeutic environment in which all staff, including carers, teachers and therapists, are trained to understand the young person's individual behaviours and help promote a self control programme as part of his own overall safety strategy.


In the field of children who display harmful sexual behaviours, the best practice in the United Kingdom and United States points clearly to a move away from the 'shame and blame' approach/culture. For the best prognosis, the young people require a supportive respectful living environment alongside an organisational culture that believes that children who display such behaviour should primarily be viewed as children first and that their abusing behaviour is only one aspect of their lives, not the sole consideration.


At WOODLANDS we recognise the importance of the therapeutic work undertaken with the young people, yet we also understand it is equally important to provide a high quality caring environment. This is achieved at WOODLANDS with the young people via a committed and caring staff group.


They each have a Link Worker who is a highly committed individual who holds a pivotal role in ensuring the young person's programme is successfully carried out. This task is shared, to some extent, by their chairing of the 'Team Around The Child', whereby the young person has staff members from therapy, personal care and education on his team, who meet regularly, ensuring balance, cohesion and consistency.


The 'Team Around The Child' (TACTeam) is also the forum where decisions are made concerning a young person's personal safety plan and where, when and of what duration should it entail.  This would include whenever appropriate the involvement of the allocated social worker and any other relevant professionals.

Therapeutic Intervention.

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In terms of methodology the therapists will use the following having given consideration to the age, ability and learning style preference of the individual:


  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

  • Eye movement desensitisation & reprocessing (EMDR)

  • Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

  • Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT)

  • Role Play

  • CBT-based play therapy (CBPT)

  • Family therapy


It may also be important to change communications with the family and promote a more positive contact, even if the long term plans do not include reintegration. However, the knowledge acquired can enable the family to effectively protect other children and support the young person through their programme.


Family therapy emerged from systems theory, which sees families as living systems whose dynamics are constantly altering as each family member deals with life, creating unpredictable outcomes.


The focus is on the context of problems, so family therapy can be seen as an ecological approach. It is now recognised that family intervention is an integral part of the work during a young person’s residence and can have a major impact on any positive outcome.