Therapeutic Model

We endeavour to promote and develop a culture based on empowerment, acceptance and learning. This is supported by a needs driven child centred approach to care management.

All foster carers and staff at Fairways care are supported to work together to translate the core principles into practice, assisted by high quality training.

The training program is grounded using psychodynamic theory, but making good use of attachment theory, systemic theory and ensuring staff are up to date with the developing importance that neuroscience has to play in our understanding of child development.


The overall therapy model for Fairways Care is the relationship model. This model places emphasis on the development of safe secure relationships that enable all foster carers and staff to respond to the emotional, physical and spiritual needs of the child, their foster home, school or residential setting. The medium of the therapeutic relationship is essential to create the fundamental safety and security needed to establish trust and development.

The Therapeutic Relationship

The relationship is central to the patient orientated approach. Within the context of the treatment there is an opportunity to address emotional and social issues deriving from past dysfunctional relationships. There are specific skills required around establishing and maintaining consistent healthy relationships in a therapeutic childcare setting.The adults who are presenting this model in practice need to understand the key elements of what a therapeutic relationship is based upon.

  • Unconditional Acceptance
  • Empathy
  • Attending & Listening
  • Open Questioning
  • Reflection
  • Silence
  • Physical and Behavioural Techniques
  • Concreteness
  • Professionalism
  • Warmth and Being Genuine

The three core principles

1. All foster carers and staff engaging and partaking in the key elements of the therapeutic relationship in order to promote and enhance their understanding of, and ability to deliver a psychodynamic approach.
2. The development of a reflective culture at all levels and in all disciplines is paramount
3. Collaborative working is central to a high quality treatment environment

A psycho-dynamic approach can be described as trying to support an individual to change from within, that is to see their behaviours as symptoms of the inner conflict and to try and address the causes of the symptoms rather than to rectify the behaviours. This approach is used to understand children’s behaviours as communications of unmet needs.
It is through the examination of the communication that children present through their behaviour that themes begin to emerge and their underlying needs can be identified.
The emotional impact of this work is considerable, and it is only through a high level of mutual support acknowledging and understanding these processes that foster carers and staff are able to continue working effectively. Reflective practice within the organisation enables staff to question their own reactions and behaviours and also that of their colleagues with the aim of improving practice leading to a greater understanding of the children’s behaviour.
This reflective culture at the heart of the various teams and departments in the organisation is an essential part of the organisation. This encourages children to develop reflective skills enabling them to explore and understand the impact for them of living and learning alongside one another.
The sharing of the impact of the work leads to collaborative working, but further to this Fairways is conscious of the potential splits between departments and teams and so tries to combat this by actively engaging in collaborative work. The therapeutic approach is well-known for having inclusive meetings. Fairways care encourages open communications at all times, paying due care to the sensitivity of those present. Difficult subjects are encouraged to be talked about with parents and other professionals. These three core principles are closely interlinked, and directly look after the wellbeing of staff and children, it is by paying careful attention to staff needs (through support structures, training and individual team and departmental relationships) that the children’s needs can best be met.