Image of an adult holding a young persons hand

Cafcass launches animated video for children and young people involved in family court proceedings

Cafcass has launched a new animated video called “Taking me seriously: letting you know how we help” at a dedicated “explainer” event hosted by the National Business Centre.

The new video has been developed in collaboration with members of the Family Justice Young People’s Board (FJYPB) – children and young people with direct experience of family court proceedings.

The video explains how Cafcass helps children and young people involved in the family court. It features animated avatars and voices of FJYPB members sharing their recollections of how being involved in court proceedings made them feel, Cafcass have said.

It shows how Cafcass social workers help them understand what is happening in family proceedings, the help children will have to understand what will be recommended to the court, and we hear their positive experiences about having a voice that is heard in the process.

The video and event are the start of a series of engagements over the next year to “help explain to families, children and Cafcass partners, our intention to build on the successes of the last few years with a strong and bold ambition to offer exceptional experiences to children and families who come to Cafcass”.

Working with over 140,000 children annually whose future is decided by the family courts, Cafcass provides a service that prioritises their safety, their voices and their needs, taking into full account their families and those who are connected to them.

The services featuring at the event included:

  • ‘Hear to Listen’: a national freephone service that allows children and young people to explain to Cafcass what it did well and what it could do better; and
  • ‘My Cafcass Journey’ – a service designed to improve support for children and young people accessing their personal data held by Cafcass.

Speaking about their involvement in the new video,  Matthew, a FJYPB member said:

“I personally like the animation and think we’ve done a good job, at providing a real-world experience from a child / young person. The day of the voice recording it was good to see each other doing an amazing job at representing the character.”

Speaking about the event and the launch of the video, Cafcass Chief Executive, Jacky Tiotto, said:

“Despite all the challenges that persist in the family justice system, we are determined to keep doing more and better for children and their families during a very difficult and frightening time in their lives. Explaining how we are intending to make further improvements and why, is a really important part of our ambition as a partner in this system. I want us to excite everyone and to ask every day, what more can we do and to be brave and energetic in doing those things. The video series – Taking me seriously – is just the start and its brilliant!

Another central and important part of what we want to do is to make sure that families and children in particular understand what we are saying to the family court about what we think is safe and in their best interests. Our family court advisers and all of us who work at Cafcass have the privilege of making relationships with children to inform the very important decisions made by the family court.”

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