Childhood First

Childhood First

Charity information

Childhood First

Childhood First is a charitable company (Charity No. 286909) that cares for, treats and educates children and young people with severe emotional and behavioural difficulties caused by neglect, abuse and other trauma. From the establishment of our first therapeutic community in 1970, Childhood First has been successfully working with children and young people for nearly 40 years, whilst consistently improving and refining our treatment method. The children and young people with whom we work are those with the most severe cases of behavioural and emotional disturbance. Often they have passed through several state – sponsored placements and foster homes, without lasting success, before coming to us. Without our dedicated help, there is a high probability that these children and young people will face a lifetime of depression, violence, crime, further abuse to themselves and others, secure psychiatric containment, and/or prison. We provide innovative, specialist help in an environment where severely traumatised children and young people can achieve the emotional and mental maturity needed to heal from their trauma; fully develop their potential; and reintegrate into society as fully functioning, purposeful members.

Our therapeutic approach focuses on the cause of children’s distress, which is located in the breakdown of relationships with others. By attending to the cause rather than simply trying to change behaviour (through punishment, behavioural therapies or drugs), we make a real difference to children and young people’s lives, with our measured outcomes being substantially better than the national average amongst looked-after children; and in some cases on par with the mainstream non-looked after population.

Founded 1983

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