Posted on 16th December 2021
Seven Care Services have recently trained all clinical staff in P.A.C.E (Playfulness, Acceptance, Curiosity, Empathy) which is a model developed by Clinical Psychologist Dr Dan Huges, as an approach to supporting children and young people who have experienced trauma in their lives (e.g., abuse, neglect). The model focuses on supporting adults to build safe, trusting relationships with children who may not have had the opportunity to develop secure attachments in early childhood.
Through communication, adults are able to create a non-judgemental environment for children to explore their thoughts, feelings and emotions, whilst feeling supported and understood.
The four key elements of P.A.C.E are:
1. Playfulness – creating a light and playful atmosphere when communicating with the child. This can help with diffusing difficult or tense situations and reduce the likelihood of being met with anger or defensiveness.
2. Acceptance – accepting the child’s thoughts, feelings and perceptions without judgement. It is possible to not agree with the child, whilst still validating and accepting their experiences.
3. Curiosity – trying to understand the child using a quiet, accepting tone. Exploring their experiences in a curious manner and taking the stance of “not knowing” rather than assuming.
4. Empathy – being with the child in the moment and helping them carry their big emotions. Putting yourself in the child’s shoes and showing compassion towards their feelings and experiences.
The model is becoming a more recognised approach within fostering and residential settings. By flexibly combining the four elements of P.A.C.E, adults are able to create a sense of connectedness and understanding with the children in their lives.
Seven Care Services incorporates different models of care in our approach to make sure our service provision is person centred and the children we look after receive the best outcomes of care.
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