Cafcass Positive co-Parenting Programme extended

After a successful two-year pilot, positive feedback from parents and Family Court Advisers and two CYPNow awards, our Positive co-Parenting Programme (CPPP) has been embedded into national practice.

CPPP is a 12-week programme for families which provides structured sessions to some parents in family proceedings, to help them decide on the best arrangements for the child(ren) involved.

It aims to promote positive change, improve communication between parents, reduce the duration of court proceedings and delay, and restore the focus on the child in cases where parents may have got stuck in their own conflict and lost sight of their children.

It encourages parents to place themselves in their children’s shoes, so they can understand the impact of their behaviour. Restorative practice principles are used to help the child recover with the support, where possible, of both parents.

The programme will be offered nationally in those ‘Rule 16.4 cases’ where harmful conflict is identified as the most significant risk to the child. These cases are particularly difficult or complicated family court cases where the Judge decides to make the child a party to the proceedings and appoints a Cafcass Guardian to represent the child.

CPPP will now also be extended on a trial basis in cases where the judge has ordered a Section 7 report – this aspect of the programme will be reviewed after six months. Family court advisers can recommend the Cafcass Positive co-Parenting Programme to help families safely reach agreements that work for both parents, and the child(ren) involved. If this is recommended, and the parents volunteer to take part, it will form part of the court process.

Sarah Parsons, Principal Social Worker for Cafcass said:

“We’re very pleased to be embedding the Cafcass Positive co-Parenting Programme at an earlier stage of the process where appropriate for this to happen, after Positive feedback from children, families and our Family Court Advisers in the pilot process. Thanks to my colleagues for working so hard to get us to this point and for creating a programme that helps us deliver on our aim to reduce parental conflict that impacts on the lives of children through high quality social work.”  

Parents and families can find out more about the programme here.

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