The Child Impact Tool is an interactive and colourful booklet developed by CAFCASS which empowers social workers by facilitating direct communication with children, enabling them to express wishes and feelings in a safe environment. It supports record-keeping, validates children’s experiences, and offers a child-centered perspective for informed decision-making. This tool promotes active participation of children in safety planning and case decisions, fostering resilience and addressing well-being concerns effectively.
The “My life” and “Things that make me” sections of the tool encourage children to reflect on positive aspects of their lives and discuss upsetting situations, fostering resilience. “My strengths” and “My journey” further promote resilience by helping children describe coping mechanisms and significant life events. Additionally, the tool includes sections like “My worries” and “Feeling safe” to explore factors affecting well-being and safeguarding concerns. “About my family” delves into the child’s home environment, while “My hopes for the future” allows them to express their aspirations.
‘About me’ and ‘Helping my family’: These sheets help children talk about their living situation, the people they trust, and their support network, which is essential for their well-being. They are particularly useful for children in diverse living situations, including those in care.
‘My life’: These sheets encourage children to reflect on what they like and dislike about their current life, as well as their strengths. It also invites them to think about their hopes and dreams for the future.
‘My journey’: This section likens life to a journey and prompts children to consider significant events that have shaped their lives, both positively and negatively. It encourages them to discuss how they’ve been affected by these events.
‘Feel good’ and ‘Feel bad’: These sheets allow children to express their emotions, whether positive or negative, and provide space for writing or drawing to communicate their feelings.
‘How to use this tool’: This brief guide offers an explanation of how these sheets can be used to promote resilience in children and foster discussions about their lives and feelings.
‘My worries’ and ‘Feeling safe’: These sheets help explore factors affecting a child’s well-being, their sense of safety, and their ability to cope with worries or concerns.
‘About my family’ and ‘My hopes for the future’: These sections delve into a child’s home environment, how their family handles emotions, and their aspirations for the future.
‘Sorting things out’: This sheet is designed to help children share their needs and the support they require, considering the court process.
‘My space’ and ‘Worryometer’: These are tools that can be used throughout interactions with the child. ‘My space’ allows them to express what’s important to them through drawing or writing, while the ‘Worryometer’ visually represents their feelings, which can be useful when discussing worries and safety.