In this issue


Looking forward in Norfolk (free article)
Elaine Bennett organised an inaugural young people’s mental health summit in the county

Creating a positive future
Chathurika Kannangara and Jerome Carson advocate for positive psychotherapy with young people

A closer look at provision in Scotland
Rachel Eastop and Moira Hood on the shortage of counselling for young people, and the even shorter supply of counsellors

In practice

Running groups
Susie Ward offers rationale, experience and tips for starting groupwork

With Dylan’s help
Lorraine Leeper shows how she uses her therapy dog with young clients

Rebecca Kirkbride on why and how we should competently use them with 11s–18s


On divorce and separation
Matt Barnard recognises how adolescent development can be derailed by family break-up

Engaging with authority in school
The counsellor must think constructively and reflectively, says Lucy-Jean Lloyd

Losing our way
Alix Hearn issues a call to us to start evidencing the soul-work we do in therapy


Curriculum and competences
Caroline Jesper on the current state of play

The four nations
Steve Mulligan on work around the country in 2017


Reflecting on… #metoo
Jeanine Connor

Thinking about… supervision challenges
Alison Smyth

Considering… love
Nick Luxmoore

Word for word
New column for a practitioner’s personal response to a given quote. First off, Edith Bell

From the chair

Cover of BACP Children, Young People and Families journal, March 2018

A pdf of this issue is available in the BACP Children, Young People and Families journal archive.

Welcome from the editor

I was thinking recently about the need to keep moving forward and keep thinking. Either one without the other is, respectively, doomed to failure or pointless.

You will have noticed by now that we’ve moved forward to a shiny new design in the journal. And a huge amount of thinking has been invested in it for months. We think we have it right, but feedback is welcome.

However, we need ‘thinking’ to permeate all areas of our life in the CYP arena. Things are ‘complicateder’ for children now (as one said). The complexity of their life has evolved to include, for instance, family breakdown and remix, emotional poverty, stress, and the downsides of cyber-reality – mostly happening together. I often gaze longingly after those therapists who have raced ahead of me and done so much more than me to help young people (some also edit journals, so I really have no excuse). But what excites me most are those who are clearly thinkers too.

One such is fellow member, Elaine Bennett, who thought hard about what she was doing, and about the state of joined-up working for young people in her area, and organised a successful day conference in Norfolk last September. The aim was to engage a whole range of professionals involved with children and young people’s mental health in the county. We lead with this story. And I hope it inspires some of us to think about doing likewise. We can never move on constructively without putting in the thinking element. Change for the sake of change is anathema, even in a profession where change is the aim. But change that is well thought through (a movement for improvement?) will be life enhancing and bring results. I think Elaine might have started a movement in Norfolk. 

In this issue we also think hard about how counsellors can use their authority in schools, how adolescent development can get snagged on the thorns of divorce and separation, and how to maintain our roots of ‘therapy as soul work’ – in a funding-starved world where the use of measures is pretty much requisite for all sorts of reasons.

But outside of journal content, a huge amount of thought and moving things forward also comes as standard for the divisional Chair’s post. Our current Chair and Deputy Chair have just handed over the reins to their successors – as Cathy explains in her final piece, and announced at our February conference in London. I would like to offer Cathy and Wendy my sincere thanks for the passion and thought with which they’ve led this division, including – more recently – on its journey towards a new identity within BACP. That identity, as you will have seen from the cover, now overtly includes ‘families’. We’ve often covered family issues here, and many of us do connect with family members. So it seems wholly appropriate to rename us. My own private practice testified to the heightened staying power of outcomes if a family – of whatever configuration – was engaged in an appropriate way, and with agreement. No one and no problem exists in isolation. We are now, therefore, proudly: BACP Children, Young People & Families (BACP CYPF). A good time, then, to have donned our new clothes!

But thinking and moving forward must continue immediately for us as a divisional group of therapists. In May this year, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) will come into force. There is a significant broadening of the current rules, and we should make time to visit the Good Practice in Action resources on the BACP website and search for GPiA 097, which explains the new status quo. We cannot ignore it if we’re to remain ethical and legal.

However, thinking and moving on in a more imaginative way, I’ve now introduced a column in which members are invited to express their personal response to a given quote. No references, no generalisations. And only 700 words. If you’d like to be considered for responding to future quotes, let me know. I hope that reading more idiosyncratic contributions from other members will provide not only interest but also food for thought (one of the core aims of the journal).

Let’s all be movers and thinkers in 2018.

Eleanor Patrick