Sep 18

Message from the Independent Chair of the CSCB

This is a very significant moment of change for safeguarding in Croydon as we implement our new arrangements in response to the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and Working Together 2018. The establishment of the Croydon Safeguarding Children Partnership on 1st September marked the end of the CSCB and the beginning of the new multi-agency safeguarding arrangements. A formal launch will take place at the first meeting of the new Croydon Safeguarding Partnership on Monday 25th November.

The final meeting of the CSCB on 22nd July included ‘business as usual’ but also provided an excellent opportunity to reflect on partnership working during 2018/19. Partners identified the following achievements in the final year of Croydon Safeguarding Children Board:

  • Vulnerable Adolescents Review – nationally recognised and leading to real change in Croydon.
  • Positive and constructive challenge leading to better working together.
  • Better use of data has helped us to know ourselves, the good bits and the areas for development.
  • Continuity of the CSCB membership; building confidence which supports a strong direction.
  • The issue of Neglect – we have started a journey and made positive steps.
  • Children with disabilities is now on our agenda.
  • Serious Case Reviews have focused minds influencing practice and informing strategic and political decisions.
  • Communications have started to improve and have become more joined up.
  • Better quality of free training on offer which is being used by a wider reach into the community and professionals.
  • Contextual safeguarding and the complex adolescent panel are all positive.
  • New CSCP arrangements; smooth transition.
  • Improvements following visible leadership and change in the local authority.
  • Partnership buy in, driving change, working well together, parallel planning, and appetite for joint working.

I am enormously grateful to partners for these reflections which really capture the tangible achievements of the CSCB and illustrate the strength of partnership commitment to improving the lives of children, young people and families in Croydon. This commitment is greatly valued and is something to be built on as it is fundamental to the success of the new Croydon Safeguarding Children Partnership.

The last piece of work undertaken by the CSCB is the publication of the CSCB Annual Report 2018-19. This is an important celebration of achievements and highlights the strengths and areas for development that will influence the work of the new partnership. We are publishing today and the findings will be taken forward by the Croydon Safeguarding Children Partnership.

I would like to conclude by offering my thanks to everyone who has contributed to the effectiveness of the CSCB. I would like to begin by thanking Maureen Floyd, our Business Manager, who has been the driving force behind much of our work including the Vulnerable Adolescents Review. I also want to express my appreciation for the work of the CSCB team which has supported us with enormous dedication and professionalism. Thank you, Anita, Donna, Lauren, Nia and Vicky.

I also want to thank the Executive Group (Robert Henderson, Elaine Clancy and Neil Matthews). They have demonstrated clear leadership and shared ambition for the children and young people of Croydon in their commitment to partnership working and through the development of the new safeguarding arrangements.

My final thanks go to all of you who have been working tirelessly, in partnership, to make sure children, young people and families get the help and protection they need. I feel confident and optimistic that we have a firm foundation for the work for the new Croydon Safeguarding Children Partnership and I look forward to working with you in my new role as Independent Chair and Scrutineer.

With my very best wishes

Di Smith

Independent Chair of CSCB

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NHS Croydon Health Services
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