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Sarah’s Story

Sarah* arrived at Waterside from a previous placement in England, which had broken down due to Sarah setting fire to the laundry room during the night. Sarah had been charged with arson and endangerment of life. Sarah had been in care for approximately one year prior to her admission to Waterside and had several placements during this time.

Sarah had a self-proclaimed prophecy that she could end a placement within 12 weeks and didn’t build relationships with staff. Sarah stated that there was no point in building relationships, as she didn’t stay in a placement for long enough.

In previous placements, Sarah was verbally and physically aggressive and abusive towards staff. Sarah struggled to engage with her education, was frequently absconding from her placement, and was at risk due to misusing drugs and alcohol. There were also child sexual exploitation (CSE) concerns when Sarah previously resided with her family.

When Sarah first arrived at Waterside she struggled to engage with staff, set fire to her bedroom curtains and assaulted a member of staff. The current indicators that were witnessed by staff when Sarah was struggling to manage her behaviour, included changes in her facial expressions, loss of appetite and changes in her personal hygiene and sleeping routines.

Sarah’s key issues and needs included:

  • Mental health needs
  • Impulse control
  • Education attendance
  • Risk taking behaviours
  • Drug and alcohol misuse
*Name and images have been changed to maintain confidentiality.