CCS - Caring for Child Survivors Guidelines

Caring for Child Survivors

Meeting the care and treatment needs of child survivors of sexual abuse in humanitarian settings requires technical expertise and coordination across all relevant sectors. Child survivors have a profound need for care and treatment that is appropriate to their age, cultural context, psychological symptoms, and type of abuse.

The IRC, in partnership with UNICEF, developed the Caring for Child Survivors (CCS) initiative which focuses on developing user-friendly and field-tested guidelines and tools for health and psychosocial staff working with child survivors of sexual abuse in humanitarian settings. On this page, you will find newly developed tools and resources that outline how to provide care to child survivors, in addition to tools to build the capacity of service providers working with children and families affected by sexual abuse.

For more information about the CCS Initiative, please contact the IRC Women's Protection and Empowerment Technical Unit at info@rescue.org.

 
CCS Guidelines - Chapter Descriptions
Chapter 1 Core Child Sexual Abuse Knowledge Competencies
CCS Guidlines Chapter01 Cover

This chapter applies to health and psychosocial service providers working with children and families affected by sexual abuse. This chapter outlines the core knowledge areas required for service providers to apply and complement other professional knowledge and skill competencies. For example, doctors and nurses must demonstrate competent clinical care for sexual assault survivors and psychosocial workers must show competency in case management in addition to specialized technical knowledge about sexual abuse. In addition to outlining the child sexual abuse knowledge areas, this section introduces a tool for supervisors to assess the knowledge and competencies of individual staff members. Accurate and full knowledge on child sexual abuse is central to delivering appropriate care and treatment to children and families. Service providers have the responsibility to share information with children and caregivers because accurate knowledge facilitates recovery and healing.Without accurate knowledge, service providers may perpetuate harmful beliefs that can cause further emotional distress and prevent healing.

Download PDF of This Chapter

Related Tools:

Supervision Tool: CCS Knowledge Assessment (CCS - KA)
 
Chapter 2 Core Child-Friendly Attitude Competencies

This chapter outlines core child-friendly attitude competencies that staff working with child survivors must possess. Possessing a child-friendly attitude is essential when working with children and families in a response capacity. In addition to outlining the core child-friendly attitude competencies, this section introduces a supervision tool, the CCS Attitude Scale, to assist supervisors/managers in evaluating staff attitudes toward children and, specifically, children who have been sexually abused.

Download PDF of This Chapter

Related Tools:

Supervision Tool: CCS Attitude Scale
 
Chapter 3 Core Skills: Engaging and Communicating with Child Survivors

This chapter applies to health and psychosocial service providers working with children and families affected by sexual abuse. It introduces best practices for communicating and engaging children who have experienced child sexual abuse. It also includes step-by-step guidance on how to conduct an interview with a child survivor. Service providers must possess specialized skills in child-centered communication to effectively care for child survivors. Their work, whether under the supervision of health care and/or with psychosocial and case management support, requires them to exchange information with children efficiently and effectively.

Download PDF of This Chapter

Related Tools:

Supervision Tool: CCS Communication Assessment (CCS - CA)
 
Chapter 4 Guiding Principles and Key Issues

This chapter, intended for health and psychosocial service providers, introduces a set of guiding principles representing best practice from both the child protection and GBV sectors. These guiding principles provide ethical and practical guidelines for working with child survivors. The chapter then outlines guidance for how to approach key issues and procedures, such as handling mandatory reporting and confidentiality protocols in child abuse cases. It also addresses ways to balance the best interests of the child throughout service delivery by focusing on the roles of the child, caregiver and service provider in the decision-making process. This chapter serves as precursor to the following chapters, which explain how to provide case management and psychosocial care services. Service providers must have a solid understanding of the issues covered in this chapter prior to offering services because they may be required to follow certain practices or laws for handling mandatory reporting, confidentiality, and decision-making in informed consent procedures as part of their overall service delivery guidelines. Specific instructions on how to obtain permission from caregivers and children in case management (referred to as informed consent and informed assent) are outlined in Chapter 5.

Download PDF of This Chapter
 
Chapter 5 Case Management for Child Survivors

This chapter is for service providers that offer case management to children and/or GBV survivors. They will learn the step-by-step process for adapting standard practices of case management to meet the needs of child survivors of sexual abuse. The chapter builds upon the knowledge, attitude and communication skill competencies outlined in chapters 1 through 3. The foundational skill set outlined in these chapters helps to prepare service providers for conducting case management. For instance, service providers working with child survivors must have technical knowledge of child sexual abuse, embrace child-friendly attitudes, and be able to communicate effectively with children in order to deliver quality services. This chapter build on the instructions for engaging children and caregivers in care and treatment decisions, including how to obtain permission (i.e. informed consent/informed assent) and the limitations of confidentiality, outlined in chapter four. The chapter provides instruction on assessing children's immediate needs related to their incident(s) of violence, developing immediate care and treatment goals, and implementing and monitoring child clients' care-action plans. The chapter also provides a checklist for closing a case and offers case management tips and template case management forms.

Download PDF of This Chapter

Related Tools:

Child Needs Assessment and Action Planning Form Child Case Follow-up Form Child Case Closure Form Case Management Skills Assessment Tool (CCS-CMA) Case Management Checklist Tool Child Client Satisfaction Questionnaire
 
Chapter 6 Psychosocial Interventions for Child Survivors

This chapter details how to conduct a more in-depth psychosocial assessment for children and families using the Child and Family Psychosocial Assessment tool, and outlines a set of direct psychosocial interventions that can be offered to children and families affected by sexual abuse.

Download PDF of This Chapter

Related Tools:

Child and Family Psychosocial Needs Assessment Form
 
Chapter 7 Best Practices for Case Coordination between Service Providers

This chapter applies to service providers responding to cases of sexual abuse. This chapter outlines best practices in direct case coordination to prevent harm to the health and well-being of child survivors as their care is coordinated. Caring for child survivors requires skilled service providers to provide appropriate care and treatment, and good case coordination amongst service providers. This chapter outlines best practice in case coordination and includes a set of indicators that provide a benchmark for case coordination actions that promotes children's best interest, protection and confidentiality.

Download PDF of This Chapter
 
Staff Supervision & Monitoring Tools

The CCS Knowledge Assessment Tool (CCS-KA) is used by supervisors to measure an individual staff member's knowledge about child sexual abuse. This tool does not measure all knowledge competencies required to provide effective service (for example, knowledge areas on how to provide case management); rather, it measures technical knowledge of child sexual abuse core concepts. This is a capacity building tool. Download PDF

 

The CCS Attitude Scale is a tool for supervisors to evaluate attitudes amongst staff providing direct support to children who have been abused. The CCS Attitude Scale includes 14 statements about child sexual abuse that aim to assess personal values and beliefs. If needed, additional attitude competencies and/or questions can be added to the CCS Attitude Scale to better match values, attitudes and beliefs in a particular context or setting. The CCS Attitude Scale monitors an individual's attitudinal readiness for working directly with children, while also highlighting specific areas of focus for future training and education. Download PDF

 

The Child Sexual Abuse Communication Competency Assessment Tool (CCS-CA) can be used by supervisors to measure an individual staff member's ability to communicate and engage with child survivors. This is a capacity building tool. Download PDF

 

The CCS Case Management Assessment Skills tool (CCS-CMA) can be used by supervisors to measure individual staff members' skills and knowledge on child-centered case management practice. This is a capacity building tool. Download PDF

 

The CCS Case Management Checklist (CCS Checklist) should be used with caseworkers as part of their ongoing supervision. The checklist can be used throughout a child's case to assess a caseworker's application of skills during each step of the case management process (e.g., intake and assessment step, case action planning step, etc.). This checklist can be used once the caseworker has fully completed the case management services to evaluate the overall skill and practice in an individual case. The checklist is used to reflect with the caseworker the successes and challenges of providing case services to individual child clients. This is a capacity-building tool.

Download PDF
 

This is an optional tool which can be used in settings that are more stable (e.g., protracted refugee camp contexts and post-conflict settings). This tool is provided to children and caregivers in order to evaluate their satisfaction with services received from case management and other service providers.

Download PDF
 
Case Management Forms

The Child Needs Assessment and Case Action Plan form is meant to document the assessment summary outlining the child's main needs and the required actions needed. This form includes a section to document each care and treatment needed and planned action (e.g., referral and/or safety plan). Download PDF

 

This form is used during follow-up visits with the child/caregiver to assess progress made towards care and treatment goals. It is also used re-assess the child's safety and other actionsrequired to help the child. Download PDF

 

This form is used to formerly document the reasons why the case has been closed, and reviews a checklist of actions to take prior to closing the case. Case closure should always be discussed with the case supervisor, and the case supervisor's signature should be documented on the case closure form. Download PDF

 

The Child and Family Psychosocial Assessment Tool helps caseworkers follow a systematic process for a more comprehensive psychosocial needs assessment for children and families. Structured psychosocial assessments provide caseworkers with a more complete picture of a child's family, home, community, school and individual context to better direct psychosocial support. This tool is meant to be used in more stable settings where caseworkers see their clients more than one time. It is also meant to be used once the crisis period has ended and the child has received urgent safety and medical care. Download PDF

 
Downloads