The primary purpose of the role of the Childcare Worker is to provide support and structured services for children who are fleeing violence/abuse in the home.
The Playroom at Aoibhneas is the centre for where this work takes place. The first goal is to ensure that children feel welcome and safe. This can be done in a variety of ways, one of which is to provide an appropriate environment in the playroom, where children can express themselves through play. There is an open door policy in playroom where all mothers are encouraged to join in on the play sessions with their children.
Each child responds differently to do domestic abuse within the home.
Fear, distress, confusion are frequent effects. Children may feel ashamed or blame themselves for the situation. Some children have difficulty sleeping or have nightmares. Some children lose interest in school. Some older children may want to help or protect their mother. The abuse can have both short-term and long-term effects on children. In Aoibhneas the Childcare workers are there to listen to your children and help them.
‘Lean on Me’, an information guide for women living with domestic violence.
In the playroom children may learn to express the impact violence/abuse has on their lives. All children who come to the playroom present with various emotional and behavioural reactions. We aim to provide a therapeutic approach to our work with children, based on the developmental play model used in drama therapy. We use everyday materials for this which you would find in may childcare settings, but which, nevertheless, have a therapeutic quality.
A mixture of the two
To address difficulties in child’s environment.
Also used to educate.
Helping to fill a gap.
Structured – not necessarily an expected outcome.
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Exploration of the roles of other people and practising future roles.
Dressing up, putting on shoes, acting out stories.
Qualified artists twice a week to provide structured art sessions for children aged 5 and over.
The childcare team have divided the day into three playroom sessions:
- 9.30am – 11.30am (1 – 5 years)
- 12am – 1pm (5 – 18 years)
- 2.30pm – 4.30pm (5 – 18 years)
Aoibhneas provides liaison with other agencies in the area of children’s health, care and education in the community. It is Aoibhneas’ policy to establish both effective support and communication systems with mothers on all child protection and welfare issues.
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