Power of Family
Johny and Anne were born to a mother who did not have it easy. She lacked the understanding of her own mother, her daddy left for a new partner. During her teenage years, she started using addictive substances. In a group of addicted friends, she met the daddy of Johny and Anne. When she first got pregnant, she had no background, her partner was out of work. Her aunt offered her a place to live in an older house. Two years after Johny, Anne was born. The first difficulties came when Johny started kindergarten. He was often tired and lacked basic hygiene habits. The situation was solved by the teacher and his mother by talking. Everything was repeated with Anne as soon as she started kindergarten. Johny started missing school very often. Johny’s teacher contacted the Authority for social and legal protection of children and social worker offered the children’s mother FGC, who, despite numerous notifications from the school, family and neighbours that the children were not doing well and were often subjected to violence by their father, gave the mother a chance and was prepared to keep the children in her care if she found support from the extended family. Indeed, the family made a support plan at the meeting. It included an offer of a personal visit of grandparents’ in the home of mother and children and help with cleaning and replenishing necessary equipment. A surprising response followed. After the visit, the grandparents assessed that the environment was not safe for the grandchildren and, in consultation with the social worker, made a proposal to take custody of them. This FGC thus confirmed that one of the benefits of family group conferences is the dissemination of information about the current family situation to the wider family. It is then the family itself that can evaluate the next steps.
A story from the Czech Republic<< back to overview