Alison Price

Private Sector Professionals

Independent Foster Care Agencies

What issues/concerns can I help with?

The issues in this area of work are highly complex.  Many of the children who come into care have experienced inadequate early parenting, commonly involving abuse, neglect and/or exposure to frightening and dangerous situations.  They can be extremely difficult to parent.  They might be:-

  • defiant and aggressive, prone to spontaneous outbursts of violence
  • withdrawn/isolated and unable to trust adults
  • traumatised 
  • highly anxious
  • struggling at school and within their peer group

How I work/what help do I offer?

1.  Consultation

I offer consultations to the team of professionals around a child.  This usually includes the Foster Care Support Worker within your agency, the child’s Social Worker and the foster parents.  The focus of these meetings is to make sense of the child’s behaviour in the light of their past, to understand the challenges they present and to think about their needs.

In preparing for this work, I will normally read a number of key documents, including:-

  • Social Services’ chronology of the child’s life
  • “Core Assessments” of the child or the family, if available
  • Professional/Independent reports – psychological, educational or guardian’s reports
  • Care review minutes

Following an assessment I will meet with you to share my thoughts about the child’s needs. 

Sometimes these consultations are isolated pieces of work, but more often they lead to further on-going meetings with the foster parents or the wider network of professionals or both.  At other times, they lead to therapeutic work with the family.

2.  Therapy

Commonly foster parents have raised children of their own and run into difficulties when the parenting strategies they used themselves do not work with their foster child. They often feel unable to make sense of their child’s behaviour and unsure how to help or support him/her. Relationships are frequently strained.

The therapeutic work might be with the whole family, the parental couple, the sibling group, an individual child, or a combination of the above. 

I also offer “Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy” (Dan Hughes 2005), if indicated. This is a therapeutic approach in which the primary focus of the work is to facilitate:-

  • trust and a positive attachment relationship between the child and his/her carers
  • an understanding, within both the child and the carers, of the connection between the child’s past and the way they think, react and feel
  • a release from any self-blame the child feels for the events of their past
  • the development of a more positive sense of self

Sessions are offered to the child and carers together, as well as to the carers alone. 

How long does the therapeutic work take?

This is difficult to say, as it depends on the nature of the early trauma and the age of the child.  The work is usually long term, but positive changes are often evident within the first few months.  Regular reviews are built in, which provide the family and professional team with opportunities to evaluate progress.

3.  Training

I offer training to all levels of staff, in the following areas:-

  • Chronic Developmental Trauma
  • PTSD
  • Attachment
  • Domestic Violence
  • Abuse and Neglect
  • Child and Family development
  • Parenting skills
  • Understanding and Dealing with Challenging Behaviour
  • Anxieties and Phobias
  • Depression
  • School Refusal/Phobia
  • Separation/Divorce and its impact on the family
  • Chronic ill health
  • Bereavement

I will also tailor training packages to your particular needs.

To discuss any of these services, please telephone or email me directly by clicking on this link.

my work with families
my work with professionals organisations
social services
  Tel: 07831 450 188   Email: