Monday’s meeting at camhs was quite a significant one. It was significant because it was the first time ever that the placing authority and our local authority had attended.
Before the meeting I found myself sat in the waiting room with a social worker from the placing authority on my right and one from our local authority on my left. I sat there, in the middle of them, whilst they debated who’s responsibility we were, I’ve often felt metaphorically stuck in the middle, but on Monday, I literally was.
The meeting started at 12.30. The social worker from our LA informed us she must leave by 1.15, and the social worker from the placing authority (who’d travelled 4hours to be with us) had booked her taxi for 1.30 giving us no longer than an hour, as usual. The psychotherapist started the meeting by suggesting we all introduced ourselves, so there was me, my husband, the psychotherapist, the family therapist, the placing authority, the local authority and another lady, not sure who she was, she never said a word throughout the whole of the meeting, I think she said she was a trainee psychotherapist.
Camhs pretty much led the meeting, they talked about the girls and their varying and complex needs and how they envisaged long term support was needed. The placing authority surprised me somewhat by offering funding for many support services if the local authority were able to provide them, our local authority said they could not. The PA even offered to provide funding for the LA to ‘commission’ some sort of counselling service for us, which again the LA advised they were unable to offer. The PA also offered to pay my subscription to Adoption UK which would allow me to attend their support groups in the absence of any that our LA will permit me to attend.
Throughout the whole of the meeting I felt that the placing authority were trying their best to get us local support, given the logistics of their location in relation to ours, whilst our own local authority came across as quite stand-offish and seemingly un-cooperative. This stance from the placing authority took me quite by surprise, perhaps they’re not the unhelpful ogres I’d thought they were after all.
The meeting ended promptly 1hour after it started. Like all the other meetings I didn’t/don’t feel like anything was really achieved. Camhs said they want to conduct even more assessments on the girls and look at ways to support them individually and also all of us as a family. The PA will continue to offer funding for local support and the LA were really not interested in providing any.
So yet more talking about ‘doing’, but still no actual ‘doing’ it seems.