Through experience of working with children harmed online, the MCF has found that when sexual abuse or exploitation has involved online activity and /or technology the impacts on the victims and families are different. This, in turn, requires a specific response tailored to meet their protection needs. There is a real need for a comprehensive, multi-agency informed approach. More needs to be done to improve the level of aftercare received by children and their families
Click Path to Protection Programme
The path to protection is about how professionals need to intervene to support the child and their family from the point of discovery of the abuse to recovery. It covers considerations at each stage of the journey and different practitioners will have a role at different points on this path. This programme aims to enable all frontline workers to better protect children harmed online. It is an evidence-based, multi-faceted training and support programme. This initiative, which is supported by BT, aims to ensure that every professional working with children that are either at risk of or the victims of online abuse, understands not only what his/her role entails but also those of their colleagues from organisations jointly charged with protecting children.
In 2020 as a direct result of the COVID pandemic, the MCF adapted the training to allow it to be delivered on a virtual platform. Due to this change in format, and to continue to ensure the efficacy of the training, this was piloted within North Yorkshire Safeguarding Children Partnership and evaluation of this pilot was carried out by Professor Emma Bond, University of Suffolk.
The purpose of the training is to ensure that the professional response is one that places the needs of the abused children and their families at the centre of any intervention.
The Click: Path to Protection training model has three components:
- THINK: Path to Protection – half day training for professionals who are likely to be first responders when a concern has been raised in connection with a child being at risk of harm online
- ACT: Path to Protection – half day training for professionals responsible for investigating, assessing and managing cases when it has been identified that a child has been harmed online
- MANAGE: Path to Protection half day workshop for Managers of staff involved in investigations, assessments and intervention programmes for children sexually abused online
The focus is firmly in the how to intervene and support, acknowledging that each profession has their own policies and procedures outlining the what to do.
To find out more and book onto a course please click here