In this edition of the Therapeutic Care Journal we take a look at the work of Leila Rendel, founder of the Caldecott Community. Mark Sevia opens the edition with a short piece on her life, and this is followed by her paper ‘The child of misfortune’ a booklet written in 1952, in which she classifies and groups children under a variety of circumstances that may result in the child needing to attend a facility such as the Caldecott Community. She outlines the emergence of the Children’s Act 1948, and introduces the need for ‘Reception Centres’ as a precursor to placing a child in care.
We then move to Tanzania where we are put in touch with a very different scale of problem. Thadei Kamisa informs us of his current work on the ‘construction of a child reception house in Pangani town’ where there are currently no services to meet the needs of the 2,500 children and young people living rough on the streets of the town, many of whom have escaped poverty and abuse and survive through rag-picking, and are made more vulnerable through prostitution or criminal activity.
Keith White finishes with his two regular articles from Mill Grove, which relate to current national Mental Health concerns. The first ‘I can still hear that scream’ puts us in touch with listening to harrowing stories of earlier traumas, and how being alongside the person, being attuned to their emotional pain and simply listening is in many ‘in the moment’ situations, the only way to provide a containing presence. His second piece ‘Unheld in a healthy mind’ reminds us of the importance of attuned relationships and the risks to a child’s mental health, if they do not experience and internalise an experience of close emotional holding.
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