A Family Group Conference (FGC) is a meeting to make plans and decisions about a child.
An FGC is convened and run by an independent co-ordinator, ‘family’ is defined broadly here, to include the child, parents, extended family, including those from a distance, with other adults and friends who are concerned and care about the child or adult that needs support. The role of professionals at the FGC is to provide information and consultation rather than to influence or make decisions. At the FGC, the family will have private discussion time to produce their plan to meet the needs of the child or adult at the centre of the process. The family’s plan should be accepted, supported and resourced provided it does not put the child or adult at risk of harm.
Consistent with Camden’s model of social work and the value placed on participation, our borough residents of all ages utilise FGC, in the domain of child protection and beyond, it is used for family and community problem solving on a wide-ranging basis (for example Safeguarding Adults, Youth Safety, Early Help for families). The quality of the conversation is important, in Camden this is facilitated by meeting people in community spaces, building relationships and taking a culturally appropriate approach. FGC facilitation matches language and reflects family and community heritage where possible, whilst providing a bridge for that all important citizen led conversation.