Children in Care-Equality & Empowerment
- 08:30 - 16:30
- Pendulum Hotel & Manchester Conference Centre
By the age of almost five, due to abuse and neglect, Caroline was removed from her home and placed in a Local Authority Children’s home. Caroline experienced several foster care placements but suffered from outbursts due to frustration and the inner confusion due to her early childhood leading her into the criminal justice system. Caroline continued on a trail of destruction until she was 19 and then decided that the only way she would “make it” was to work hard so this is what she did. At 37 Caroline decided she wanted to be a Social Worker and support people who really needed it. At this point Caroline needed to find adequate care for her children while she went to university and identified that there was gap in the local area in child care providers. Caroline then applied for a lottery grant and approached her local council for funding and they gave her a six form building to use, which was to be a successful partnership with early years. Caroline became a Director of The Tree House Child Care Centre when it was formed, which provided wrap around care for school children in two of the area’s in Berkshire. Caroline’s passion for community work did not stop there and she became a Fixtures Secretary for the local football league. Following on from this she then decided to support children in her local area accessing football and became involved in three football teams from Under 13-16 and even organised two 11a side tournaments. After qualifying Caroline worked in a Disabled Childrens team for 15 years and then moved to the Emergency Duty Service (EDS) for Berkshire which is run by Bracknell-Forest Council. Caroline started her journey as a sessional Child Care Practitioner and then worked her way up to Operational Lead. Today Caroline has been employed by Bracknell- Forest Emergency Duty Service for the last 13 years. She enjoys working within a multidisciplinary team covering Adult Safeguarding, Child Care, Mental Health and Housing. Caroline was supported last year to attend the University of Brighton where she was awarded the Post Graduate Diploma in Approved Mental Health Practise. Caroline continues to have the approach that you need to “believe it to achieve it” and this is not necessarily thinking big, but change can come from small steps and having others who also share your believes and recognise/believing that you have the ability to achieve.