Training social workers to assess parental capacity to change

In situations where there is a risk of child maltreatment or there are other child welfare concerns, it is critical for a social worker to assess the parents’ capacities to change behaviours that may be having an adverse impact on the child.

Dendy Platt and Katie Riches worked withBath and NE Somerset Council children’s services, North Somerset Council children’s services, and Somerset County Council children’s services.  They co-developed and piloted a practice approach for social workers that offers a framework and materials to support the assessment of capacity to change (given the name C-Change).  The team that undertook the original development is now building an infrastructure to support training for social workers in the use of C-Change, and has established a partnership with an independent training provider, Interface Enterprises.  Through this initiative, the approach can be made available to a wider group of service providers.

Interest in the approach has been fueled by the enthusiasm of social workers who took part in the pilot training programme.

"It’s huge.  And, I think, until I did this, although I’ve been practising for a long time, until I did this, you didn’t actually sit down and actually think about it." Participating social worker 


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