The assessment and treatment service works with children and young people who have displayed worrying or harmful sexual behaviours.
Who we are
We work directly with children and young people who have displayed worrying or hamrful sexual behaviours. Where appropriate, we also work with the families of children and young people in a support and advisory role.
Who do we see?
We work directly with children and young people who display sexually harmful behaviour. We offer help to control these behaviours in childhood and adolescence to prevent them becoming entrenched in the future. We work with children and young people community teams to identify those who may be appropriate for our service.
What do we do?
The aim of all our work with young people, families, professionals and carers is to contribute to the protection of young people from future abuse. Young people are actively encouraged to confront their concerning behaviour and its impact on others in a safe environment which reinforces appropriate boundaries.
Our approach is holistic; we build upon a young person’s strengths while also addressing their harmful behaviours and their causes. We also work closely with families and carers of children and young people who are working towards change.
This work involves:
- Support for your child to help them become involved with the project and look at their behaviour
- Guidance for your child, as it is important that they understand what is right and wrong about their sexual behaviour
- Encouragement for your child to help them see their positives and strengths and build upon them
- Safety for your child and family to help build a lifestyle that reduces the risk of further harmful sexual behaviour.
What can I expect in my assessment?
Initially we will meet with your child over a number of weeks to assess their behaviour and specific needs. There are many reasons why a young person may engage in inappropriate sexual behaviour and our assessment will look at some of these reasons and talk about them with you.
The ATS will collaborate with other professionals involved in your child’s case. We will arrange meetings with you during this time and ask you to contribute to the assessment.
After our assessment is complete we will compile a comprehensive report which we will share with you. We will then discuss ways with you in which your child can be helped. This may involve meeting with your child on a weekly basis.
It may also involve regular meetings which include you as well as your child, other family members, and professionals.
Your role as a parent or carer
- We appreciate that you may be under considerable pressure and stress and that this may be a very difficult time for you and your family. You may have coped alone with this and you may be experiencing disapproval or anger from family, friends, or the community
- We have experience or supporting families in these situations, and we are able to help and advise you
- As a parent or carer you may play a vital role in helping your child address and change their worrying sexual behaviour
- You can help us get to know and understand your child. We need you to help us make sense of your child’s life experiences so far
- You can help us by encouraging your child to work with the ATS
- We can help you to understand what has happened and why, and help make plans to support your child and to prevent this from happening again. We can help put plans in place which will aim to keep your child safe.
- We can help you come to terms with the recent events and behaviour of your child. Parents often feel shocked and find it hard to believe what their child has done
- Parents often feel helpless, confused or angry. For some the revelation may bring back painful memories of past events.
Information discussed within sessions is treated as confidential. However, if we are concerned about the safety of a young person or another, we will share this information with other professionals as part of the Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy. If this is the case we will always try to inform those involved of what we are doing.
Where can you find us?
New Park House
Reception: 01403 223200 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm)
If you are concerned about a child or young person outside of these hours, please call:
Social Services Emergency out of hours: 0330 222 6664
Mental Health Helpline: 0300 5000 101