Education is viewed as one of the most important factors in the prevention of offending or reoffending. Young People working with and under the supervision of YOS are expected to be either in school or accessing education, training or employment (ETE)
The YOS Education Specialist liaises with Schools, Education Departments and Careers Wales to facilitate a young person’s access to appropriate education provision.
For young people not accessing ETE support will be available from YOS to facilitate their access to ETE.
For a young person who has left school and who is not engaged in either education, training or employment a careers guidance interview with the YOS Designated Careers Advisor will be arranged. Once this has been completed enquiries will be made to find and secure a suitable placement for the young person based on the careers interview and the young person’s area of interest.
Access to ETE will be monitored during the period of time the young person is supervised by the Youth Offending Service.
Substance Misuse Worker
A large proportion of young people for various reasons experiment, use or misuse substances (including alcohol and tobacco) at some point in their lives.
As a substance misuse service after the initial contact with a YOS case officer a referral may be made.
The substance misuse worker will make an initial appointment to introduce themselves, the service and complete the full assessment. Once the assessment has been completed, the worker and young person will compile a needs led care plan and decide what interventions are appropriate and required to support the young person with reducing the risk of further harm and to encourage them to make better choices.
The service will offer mainly one to one sessions, groups and attend important appoints such as: GP, Sexual Health, dentist, onward referrals and support the transition to other services.
The service also runs parent groups; this aims to support and advice parents/guardians and carers if their child or young people are using substances. We discuss what they can do to help the child and themselves with moving forward.
The majority of appointments are voluntary but a proportion is compulsory, linked with court orders.
Throughout the young person’s time with the Youth Offending Service, their case manager will monitor progress and engagement.
Emotional and Mental Health Specialist
Each Youth Offending Service has a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) seconded to the team. This person is a qualified mental health nurse and is employed by the Aneurin Bevan Health Board.
If a case manager is concerned with a young person’s emotional / mental health they can make a referral to the Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) within the team.
The CNS is able to offer a specialised understanding of the way a young person’s emotional and mental health affects their behaviour. This understanding can be important when devising intervention plans that reduce the risk of a young person engaging in offending behaviour.
The CNS will have direct contact with young person and will consult with YOS staff, liaise with outside agencies including social services, housing and education and provide specialist training relevant to the links between emotional/mental health and offending behaviour.
The CNS will refer, if necessary, into other services, including the locality Tier 2 Community Teams (Specialist CAMHS) Child & Adolescent Forensic Services.
Through group work, constructive activities and individual intervention programmes the Youth Offending Service Youth Worker aims to help and motivate young people to develop and reach their full potential. This is achieved by enabling young people to develop their self esteem and confidence and their ability to manage personal and social relationships; by offering worthwhile and challenging new experiences and providing learning opportunities to enable young people to gain knowledge and develop new skills; by building young peoples capacity to consider risks and consequences, make informed decisions and take responsibility.
The YOS youth worker researches, develops and manages projects to enhance and encourage young people to move forward positively. Coordinates and facilitates ‘Prevention’ workshops in local schools and youth centres raising awareness of the consequences of offending / anti social / nuisance behaviour. Delivers 1:1 intervention and group work for crime vulnerable young people, to discuss topics such as keeping safe; social media, peer pressure and victim empathy.
Also, in conjunction with all Gwent YOS’s and Emergency Services, the youth worker co- facilitates several consequence and awareness raising days throughout the year.