News

CSfC Win 'Team Spirit Award' at the Launchpad Annual Pancake Race!
Team Nana represented Calcot Services for Children in the 2015 Pancake Race on the 17th Feb 2015.

The annual pancake race is hosted by Launchpad Reading, which remains CSfC's chosen Charity to support for 2015.

Dressed as lovely old nana's, Robin, Sarah, Hayley and Emma were cheered and encouraged by staff and young people across our homes and although we unfortunately did not win the race, the award for Team Spirit was certainly well deserved.

Having raised over £300 for Launchpad for this event alone this was a fun afternoon out for all involved and help for a very worthwhile cause.

CSfC are already making plans for the 2016 pancake race and hope for this to become a regular feature in our calender.

Team Nana would like to thank everybody who came to support on the day or contributed to the sponsorship.

Sharma praises local organisation for work to help children in care
Alok Sharma, the Member of Parliament for Reading West, on Friday 6th February 2015, visited Calcot Services for Children (CSfC) to find out more about their new post-16 services and accommodation.

In 2012, Alok visited Calcot Cottage, one of five care homes CSfC has been providing for children in Reading over a period of more than 20 years. In 2014 the organisation launched a new post-16 supported living service to help young people who have been in care to make a transition into an independent adult lifestyle and reduce the number of young people not in education, employment or training.

Alok was given a tour of one of CSfC’s five new one-bedroom properties across Reading and West Berkshire, to see the kind of support being offered to young people. Alongside accommodation, young people are offered bespoke care packages which include access to AQA accredited learning, assistance in budgeting and managing their own home and support in accessing suitable employment, education and training.

Alok Sharma said: “I was very pleased to visit Calcot Services for Children again to find out more about the organisation’s excellent work helping local disadvantaged young people. I was really encouraged to hear that many of the young people CSfC have supported have gone into further education or work and are now living independently.”

Alok continued: “A turbulent lifestyle at a young age can be incredibly disruptive to a child’s education which is why the Government has introduced an extra £1,900 payment to schools for every child who has ever been in care or has been adopted as part of the Pupil Premium.”

Sarah Walton, Registered Manager for Calcot Services for Children’s 16+ Supported Living Service said: “It has been wonderful to welcome Alok back to Calcot Services for Children to discuss the expansion to our service and demonstrate the further work we are able to carry out for disadvantaged young people in the local area.”

Sarah continued: “Alok has always been a great supporter or the work that we do and has a real understanding of the challenges and barriers we can face when delivering these services. We are pleased to now be able to support young people into young adulthood and into maintaining their own accommodation and to achieving further great success with this resident group.”

CSfC support local Charities for Christmas 2014!
Every year CSfC are committed to helping local charities or organisations during the festive period. This year we have been especially busy supporting not 1, not 2 but 3 local causes.

All homes enjoyed a festive ‘Christmas Jumper Day’ on December 12th with all those who chose to show off their fancy festive clothing donating £2 to Save the Children.

As an organisation we decided to banish the Christmas card this year too. To save time on writing hundreds of cards and to save the tree’s ending up in the recycling bin in the New Year, CSfC pledged that instead of sending Christmas cards to our external professionals and colleagues, we would instead donate the money we would have spent on cards, to the NSPCC. We have had a huge response from colleagues so far and look forward to adding up a total in the New Year and celebrating funds being sent to our local NSPCC project.

Lastly, all homes and young people have been busy collecting together toys, games and goodies to donate to one of our local food banks in Wokingham. Christmas is a time of year to reflect on the circumstances of others in need and see what we can do to assist. The turn out of this appeal was amazing with all young people getting fully involved and a wonderful car full of goodies making their way to the food bank for families in need.

Our success even made the news at the Who Care’s Trust! Check out the website!

http://www.thewhocarestrust.org.uk/pages/calcot-children-give-generously.html


Support and Celebrations for local football team
CSfC have ‘adopted’ a local football team in the form of the wonderful Eldon Celtic JFC.

As an organisation we have raised the funds to pay for the football kits for the entire team. The team, who play every Saturday, come rain or shine, now proudly wear the Calcot Services for Children logo on their football shirts.

We are hoping to celebrate many match wins with the football team in the near future! Go Eldon Celtic!!


Another successful Sleep Out….
For the second year running Calcot Services for Children have braved the elements for a night sleeping on the pavement, all for Launchpad Reading. With an even bigger team of ‘Sleepers’ we smashed last years fundraising target bringing in a fabulous £2317.01 for our Adopted Charity. CSfC won 3rd place in the shelter building competition with a spectacular display of shelters based on a rocket and space theme. Our shelters really did brighten up the night sky with bright colours and fairy lights however whilst entertaining and fun as ever, most importantly we raised significant funds for those in need around Reading.


Supporting Young People’s Achievements with AQA
As of 2014, the AQA Unit Award Scheme is available to every young person in our care.

Within the scheme, young people are able to earn accredited and certificated awards in a huge range of subjects such as topics relating to independent living or skills relating to a favourite activity. The sky is the limit and young people have been busy building their collection of certificates since joining this scheme.


Welcoming New Faces
In 2014 we have welcomed two new additions to Calcot Services for Children.
Robin Ward is our Regulation 33 Visitor who visits each home monthly for the completion of regulation 33 reports.

Elaine Stalker has joined us as a Return Home Interviewer to complete Independent Return Home Interviews when young people go missing from care.

Hello to our two new faces!


CSfC win the prize for 'best shelter' and successfully raise over £2000 for Launchpad Reading
Members of the CSfC management team endured a night 'on the streets' sleeping in cardboard boxes to raise money for the wonderful local charity Launchpad Reading. 

The team were thrilled to present a cheque of over £2000 on the night and enjoyed setting up the camp of cardboard boxes which had been decorated with the support of young people and adults from the homes. 

The shelter building competition was judged by the Reading Mayor and Celebrity Matt Allwright with CSfC being awarded the certificate for 1st place!

We are continuing to accept sponsorship for this event over the next 6 weeks so there is still time to show your support.


Calcot Services for Children celebrate GCSE success!!
CSfC would like to congratulate four of our young people who have recently collected results for their GCSE year. 

Young people have worked continuously hard to achieve a wide variety of qualifications such as GCSE's, AQA's and BTEC awards.

We are really proud of our young people's achievements and excited for their future education and training.

Young people are now moving on to their higher education which includes studying A levels, and apprenticeships in Catering, Construction and Animal Management. Calcot Services for Children wish them all the very best of luck. 


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Calcot Services for Children - 2 Homes Achieve Outstanding inspections under new inspection schedule
Two of our homes, Calcot Cottage and The Dingles have recently been inspected under the new inspection framework for their full inspections and have successfully achieved the rating of 'Outstanding'. Teams and young people have celebrated this wonderful news and all homes continue to strive towards ongoing outstanding outcomes. 


IIP

Investors in People Achieved

Calcot Services for Children continues to be recognised with a nationally recognised award

We have recently achieved a success review against the Investors in People Standard for staff development and training, and continue to be one of  more than 21,000 ambitious organisations in the UK that are recognised against the Investors in People framework.

Originally created to help businesses recover after the recession of the 1980s, the national quality Standard is equally as relevant today. Awarded to well-run organisations which demonstrate good management practice with a high emphasis on best practice people management and development, the Standard encourages growth, profitability and efficiency. CSfC are pleased to maintain their Investors in People Status


 

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CSfC Management Team prepare for Launchpad's 'Big Sleep Out'
On the 30th August 2013 a number of Managers and Deputies will be taking part in the Launchpad 'Big Sleep Out'.

Launchpad Reading is CSfC's 'adopted charity' and we have already taken part in a number of activities to raise money for the charity who provides opportunities and support to homeless people in Reading.

On the 30th August , the Head of Care, 2 Registered Managers and 2 Deputy Managers will be spending the whole night out in the open air with just a cardboard box for shelter and are therefore looking for sponsorship as support. All money goes directly to Launchpad and to supporting young people and adults affected by homelessness.

The below links will take you directly to the 'just giving' pages where donations are secure and prompt. Thank you in advance for your support and we will be sure to update you following the event!

https://www.justgiving.com/csfcsarah

https://www.justgiving.com/rachel-redgwell

https://www.justgiving.com/Michelle-Gooding1


Calcot Services for Children - Celebrating Learner Success!
We have recently celebrated a number of our staff achieving various leadership and management awards with a learners lunch and achievement afternoon. 
Two managers have achieved their Level 5 Diploma and a further 6 staff achieved the NVQ 3 in Leadership and Management. 

Two of the staff were nominated by West Berkshire Training Consortium for their efforts and additional commitment. This led to one learner being awarded the Apprentice 'Above and Beyond Award' which was awarded by local MP Richard Benyon.


Supporting young people in achieving economic wellbeing
CSfC support the work of the Share Foundation, who are establishing Junior ISA's for Looked After Children. The accounts are in place for young people who have been in care for over a year and an initial payment of £200 is provided by the Government. CSfC support this scheme for the young people in our care by providing annual payments to their accounts and encouraging those Authorities not yet signed up to the scheme, to do so. www.sharefound.org

CSfC work alongside leading law firm to provide support for Looked After Children
We are now working alongside Solicitors at First Law Partnership to ensure that experienced and highly trained Solicitors are available to any of our young people, 24 hours a day. 

We have together devised a procedure which ensures that the needs of our young people, often some of the most vulnerable young people, are confidently and well represented for any matters involving the law. 

CSfC look forward to working alongside these Solicitors.

The First Law


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Supporting multi professional working in the area of sexual exploitation
CSfC have recently joined The National Working Group Network for Tackling Child Exploitation. http://nationalworkinggroup.org/

This charitable organisation brings together over 1000 practitioners working on the issue of Child Sexual Exploitation in the UK. A wide range of support and expertise can be offered from within the network, on a topic which is currently relevant and of high importance in the care sector. 

Having recently joined this network, CSfC look forward to accessing and attending training events and taking an active party in the network. 
This will inform and advise our own practice with young people and ensure that together with other professionals we are doing our part in keeping young people safe from sexual exploitation. 


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CSfC Support International Missing Children's Day - 25th May 2013
Being 'missing from care' is something often associated with looked after children and is therefore a topic relevant to our work. 

The 25th May 2013 is International Missing Children's Day and each home have donated an amount to the websites poster appeal. 

For news on how you can donate and support this cause follow the below link;
https://www.missingpeople.org.uk/missing-people/young-people/international-missing-childrens-day


Therapy updates at Calcot Services for Children
CSfC have recently began working alongside further therapists and therapeutic provisions and as a result continue to promote a range of therapies available to our young people dependent on their individual need. 

Suzanne Farwell is an experienced therapist who can provide our young people with regular therapy sessions but also provides state of mind assessments. Further information on this assessment can be obtained by contacting us - see contact page - .

We are also working with a local equine centre, horse sense who can provide 1:1 or group work in equine assisted therapy. 
Horse Sense logo
www.horsesensetherapy.co.uk/index.php?pg=home


Children's Home Assessment Tool (CHAT)
Calcot Services for Children are pleased to announce that all homes are now using the Children's Home Assessment Tool (CHAT). CHAT encourages a culture of self improvement amongst the staff team and management whilst evidencing that the work we do with young people is having a positive effect. We are using them in order to ensure that the young people in our care are receiving the best service, to assess how the whole organisation is performing and as a tool to evidence positive outcomes for young people. For further information about CHAT please see www.childrenshomeassessmenttools.com.




CSfC and the Launchpad Christmas appeal
CSfC continue to prioritise our support for local charity, Launchpad Reading. We will be presenting a cheque to the charity at the end of Dec after a successful clothes collection activity which all young people and teams took an active part in.

Our latest commitment is to the charity 'SWEP' appeal where we are collecting items for those without a home this Christmas. Young people are busy donating and purchasing items which we hope will be of great use to this important appeal.
For more information as to how you can support Launchpad in this directly please click the following link
 www.launchpadreading.org.uk/volunteering/volunteering-opportunities.php


Homes reflect on and celebrate a successful 2012!
CSfC are celebrating another year of success with one of our key achievements this year being that 8 of our young people were successfully reintegrated to their birth families. This has been a wonderful achievement for each individual young person as well as the teams supporting them. 

As a result of recent transitions to birth families we now have 3 upcoming vacancies at our homes, with placements available to commence as of Jan 2013. If you are interested in referring a young person to our service please contact us. 

We are also happy to be able to share with you a selection of our homes feedback from 2012. Click here to view.


CSfC's Ofsted Inspections continue to acknowledge consistently outstanding quality of care.
The Autumn period has been a busy time for Ofsted inspections at CSfC. We have been pleased to achieve outstanding feedback and continue to consistently deliver outstanding quality of care for all our young people. 

Ofsted reports for individual homes can be obtained via the contact us page or by visiting the ofsted website. 


CSfC welcome Reading West MP, Alok Sharma to our homes
Following recent negative national press coverage of children’s care homes, Calcot Services for Children (CSfC) which runs several children’s care homes in Reading, invited MP for Reading West Alok Sharma to visit Calcot Cottage, which is one of its children’s care homes in Alok’s constituency, to see the quality of care provided locally in Reading.

Alok was given a tour of Calcot Cottage. The staff explained that the home is registered to provide care for up to five young people and has recently again received an ‘Outstanding’ rating from Ofsted. CSfC is one of only a handful of the country’s 1,400 children’s homes to receive an ‘Outstanding’ rating for 3 years or more. In response to the recent press coverage regarding residential child care, CSfC explained that the average age of children in its care is 13 years, compared to national reports of 15.5 years, and the average placement length is 1 year 4 months, compared to national reports of 7 months.

CSfC runs five homes, including Calcot Cottage, and has been providing children’s homes in the local area for the last 19 years. These homes allow the most vulnerable children and young people to have stable, long-term placements, with the view to having the young people achieve permanency within a family wherever possible. Staff at CSfC use a wide range of methods to achieve this goal, including group work, direct work, life story work, comprehensive activity plans and behaviour work. CSfC also employs a Clinical Supervisor who works closely with the staff teams to support and supervise them to carry out therapeutic work with the young people.

Alok said: “I was pleased to be invited to have a look at the quality of provision at Calcot Cottage. The care home is clearly a very good facility and I was pleased to learn that it has received an ‘Outstanding’ rating from Ofsted for all of the last five years.”

Rachel Redgwell, Head of Care at Calcot Services for Children, said: “It was a pleasure to welcome Alok into one of our homes so we could show him the excellent care we provide in Reading. We hope that Alok found the visit enjoyable and informative.”

Rachel continued: “CSfC provides residential care to the most vulnerable looked-after children and we strive to create a family atmosphere, as opposed to an institutional one, for our children. All of our staff care deeply about the quality of the care we provide at our homes, and CSfC will continue to strive to provide outstanding care for the most vulnerable looked-after children.”
Link to news article here.


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CSfC remain members of the newly formed TCTC
TCTC is a newly formed group following the successful merging of Charterhouse Group and the Association of Therapeutic Communities.

CSfC remain members of the newly formed group, more information can be located at the website www.therapeuticcommunities.org


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CSfC's Fundraising recognised by British Youth Council
CSfC's recent 'Swimathon' and additional fundraising for Launchpad has been recognised in the British Youth Council's most recent newsletter Click here to view the newsletter.

The British Youth Council regularly celebrate and publicise positive achievements from members and we are pleased to have our recent fund raising activities highlighted.


Micheal Randall  Catherine Cox Ian D'Souza Sala Lawrence

Online Young Person's Guide - Calcot Cribs
CSfC's popular online guide for young people can be visited at  www.calcotcribs.co.uk

For those interested in taking a closer look please contact us to request a password.

This useful and informative guide lets young people know more about our homes and what we provide and was created in consultation with the young people living in our homes now. The site also includes useful links for young people in care and is regularly updated!


OFSTED Outstanding 11-12

We remain outstanding 2011-2012!

After receiving outstanding results from recent Ofsted inspections, CSfC continues to live up to its high standard of care and all homes are running successfully. Inspection reports for our homes can be requested from the homes manager (see contact page)


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Calcot Services for Children are proud to have recently become a Friend of Launchpad, Reading.

CSFC will be involved in fundraising activities to help support the good work that this Charitable Organisation carry out to those in need in Reading.

Launchpad provide support for single homeless people with support needs, people with mental health problems and ex-offenders. They also provide help with benefits, living skills, healthy eating and budgeting, support around training and employment.


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Calcot Services for Children are proud to have recently become a member of ICHA.

ICHA are independent providers of child care services and resources for children and young people. ICHA currently represent more than 70 member organisations, the members of which represent over half of the independent capacity in England and Wales.
ICHA aims to be the voice of the independent children’s homes sector, representing members on the most pressing issues of the day on the quality of childcare and outcomes for vulnerable children. Calcot Services for Children supports the aims of ICHA.


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Click here for previous news stories.

"Social Workers comment extremely positively on the service that is provided and the progress that young people have made."
OFSTED - 2013