The new National Care Standards: what this means for Iosis

Posted on March 11, 2020 by Iosis

On 1 July last year, the new National Care Standards came into effect.

Developed by an expert advisory panel from Oranga Tamariki in consultation with children in care, they set out the standard of care that every child and young person needs to do well and be well, and the support caregivers can expect to receive when they open their hearts and homes.

The standards cover a range of things that are vital for tamariki and rangatahi in care, including: supporting them to express their views and develop a life plan; keeping them connected to their whānau; giving them opportunities to participate in their culture; and making sure their education, health and recreation needs are met. 

Care agencies have a mandate to help and support carers to change the lives of the children as much as they can, and Iosis will have implemented the first stage by the end of June. 

Wendy Barthow, Iosis Practice Development Advisor, is delighted that the needs of children, and their carers, are being recognised and supported. “The new care standards are underpinned by the understanding that all parties involved in foster care – the social worker and foster carer – are wanting to achieve the best outcome for the child and are working together to achieve this.

For foster carers, it will mean closer support from social workers, as well as on-going training and dialogue to implement a care plan that will benefit the child. Foster carers may be required to do a bit more, to work more closely with the social worker in order to more effectively benefit the child while in their care.“ 

Wendy says that another beneficial change is the ‘All About Me’ plan for the child in care. “This acknowledges that a child in care can easily lose a sense of who they are, their roots and whanau. Each child will have a plan which accompanies them when they go to a new carer. It will include a memory book of photos and key milestones – in essence their life’s storybook and memory box. So when the child leaves, their story goes with them. This is important in terms of the child connecting with whanau and reconnecting with family.”

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