Press Release

Minister addresses conference on “What works best with troubled children”

The Minister for Children, Mr Brian Lenihan, T.D., today (Tuesday 24th September, 2002) addressed the conference on “What Works Best With Troubled Children” in the Hodson Bay Hotel, Athlone, Co Westmeath.

The conference which was organised by the Department of Health and Children in partnership with the Health Boards and the Social Services Inspectorate follows on from the success of last years conference on “Best Practice in Residential Child Care”.

“This conference provides an opportunity for those working in the child care area to meet others working in this sometimes very difficult and complex area, to share ideas and experiences and to build up a network of colleagues and friends who will provide mutual support,” said the Minister.

This year´s conference again looks at Residential Care but also focuses on Foster Care and Community Services.

The conference was organised with the intention of bringing best practice and innovation in the Residential Care, Foster Care and Community Services areas to the attention of those whose work directly impacts on the lives of children in care. The two-day Conference on Tuesday and Wednesday 24th-25th September is addressing a number of areas of Best Practice in working with children in difficulty. It features a number of Keynote Speakers and variety of workshops highlighting best practice and new developments in the area.

Minister Lenihan highlighted that caring for children who cannot live at home is an onerous responsibility.

“Many children coming into care will have experienced abuse or trauma in their lives and on coming into care will miss their family and familiar surroundings. The needs of these children and young people will be complex and varied. It is vital that their physical, emotional, psychological and social needs are met in a safe, caring and understanding environment,” said the Minister.

The Minister praised the commitment and dedication of those working in the child care area and concluded, “We must continue to work together to build on these developments and ensure a better life for children”.