Sunday 21 July 2019

Annual report is published for the Oberstown campus

Oberstown Children’s Detention Campus
Oberstown Children’s Detention Campus

John Manning

Oberstown Children Detention Campus in Lusk has published its annual report for 2018.

The report presents key developments, challenges and achievements at the campus over the course of 2018. Oberstown is Ireland's only children's detention facility and provides a safe and secure environment for children who are placed in the campus by the Children Court (usually aged between 13 and 17).

As noted in the foreword by Chair of the Board, Professor Ursula Kilkelly, the Oberstown Strategic Plan, adopted by the Board of Management in 2017, has continued to guide and inform sustained improvements across all areas in 2018.

The report gives an overview of the progress made over the course of 2018 across areas such as enhanced young people's participation in a range of offending behaviour programmes and the implementation of the Campus Participation Strategy, promoting young people's involvement in decision making.

The report also outlines progress on providing an enhanced and integrated activities timetable, the introduction of a young person's information booklet and the roll-out of the Oberstown case management system, a purpose-built, electronic record-keeping system.

Professor Kilkelly said: 'Throughout 2018, the board continued to provide important strategic direction to the Campus and in addition took further concrete steps to consolidate its operations in line with the Code of Conduct for the Practice of State bodies.

'A significant development was the adoption by the Board of Management of its first Governance Handbook which was designed to provide clarity to the Board's operations.'

Professor Kilkelly also highlighted work undertaken at Oberstown to lead the way in the promotion of staff well-being.

She said: 'Oberstown has a dedicated organisational psychologist and during 2018 published a mental health and wellbeing booklet for all staff. During the year, the Campus became the first organisation in Ireland to train a full peer support work team on a third level accredited programme in Critical Incident Stress Management.'

Director of Oberstown Pat Bergin said: 'As is evident from this report, substantial progress was made in the implementation of the CEHOP model of care during 2018.

'For example, the placement planning process was developed and now provides a strong framework to guide a young person's journey through care in Oberstown.'

He addd: 'Furthermore, through CEHOP, we are constantly seeking to expand the educational offering for young people to help prepare them for leaving the campus and returning to their families and communities.'

Fingal Independent