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The vision within this document strives to place children at the centre of their own lives seeking to ensure that they are worked alongside rather than ‘done to’. This is commendable.

There is also a recognition that to deliver on the priorities, working together with other bodies such as ADCS to continue to lobby and educate the Government on what Local Authorities require to deliver real change for children and young people who are looked after is essential.

The independence of the IRO offers a real opportunity to truly be an advocate AND an activist with a small ‘a’.

– Lisa Cherry, Author, Speaker and Trainer -Trauma | Recovery | Resilience

Become welcomes NIROMP’s publication of their draft strategic priorities. It has a clear child-focused vision that emphasises the importance of both listening to and acting on the views of children in care. We know that many children in care and young care leavers do not fully understand their rights or have access to advocacy and other support; empowering children to understand their rights and influence decisions made about their lives is vital. NIROMP’s ability to work across England to protect and promote children’s rights is crucial, and we must all continue to work to ensure every child in care has equal access to high quality advocacy and review services that meet their needs and allow them to make their views heard in the way most appropriate for the individual child.

Voice at Influencing Manager, BECOME

As an older person with care experience and a retired probation manager, it is a joy/privilege to be asked to share a few thoughts about this Strategy. Loud proud and entitled , feeling loved, securely cared for and listened too and significantly being understood, What, is there not to be liked ? With a growing momentum for real change across our Care family, this document epitomises the hopes and aspirations behind a language that cares, the centrality of our children and young person, the growing movement which call for compassion/kindness to be at the root of children and social care policy and, actions designed to bring the voices of our children and young people to the very core of their care Journey whilst ensuring the accountability of all those involved.

With a focus on children and young people’s rights and being a critical friend the role of the Independent Reviewing Officer is viewed as integral to their journey of ‘Becoming’ the very best they can be through, careful planning, agreed goals and aspirations and holding others to account as carers, enablers, encouragers and facilitators. The affirmation of ‘We Will’ are to be commended and provide the additional safeguards/protective factors which underpin the hopes and aspirations of NIROMP’s key priorities . As always very best wishes in all your endeavours

Ian Gould, ECLCM Ambassador

I’ve read this a few times now – it’s a great vision and a powerful document. Happy to support. Thanks re Ofsted, it’s been (& continues to be) a difficult journey – my IRO’s are doing a marvellous job

IRO Manager

Comment on Strategic Priorities 2019-22: I think that your strategic priorities are well thought out and I applaud your commitment to keeping children’s voices at the heart of decision making. I fully agree that ‘children have a unique body of knowledge about their lives’ and that ‘decisions that are fully informed by children’s own perspectives will be more relevant, more effective and more sustainable’. Therefore including the views of children and young people in decision making can only better the outcomes for those involved. Children will be more committed to relationships and placements that they feel to be a good fit. I wholly agree that permanence should be a significant priority for children in care, and when children are happy in placements, their stability should be of key concern for professionals working with them.

Finance should NEVER be used to justify lack of appropriate care for young people. As an organisation it would be nice to see NIROMP focus their gaze on the cuts actioned by central government, which are strangling Local Authorities and corporate parents.



We know from our own work that children in care often feel that they don’t have control over their lives, and often feel that their social worker makes all the decisions for them. The role of the IRO is crucial, and it’s important that children in care understand what an IRO is and how they can help them as soon as possible when they come into care. We are particularly pleased to see the emphasis on making the review process work for all children, with different ways to share their views in and outside of review meetings. This will be particularly important for those young people who may face additional barriers when communicating with professionals about their wishes, including younger children, disabled children, those in secure settings and unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.

The emphasis both on the IROs’ skills and training as well as their commitment to children’s rights and voice is very good to see. It’s important that IROs are proactively visible so that children understand the service and how it can help them.

Voice and Influencing Manager, BECOME

#IROConf17 – not to stop questioning

Speakers were interesting and raised many issues pertinent to the role of IRO. Clear and consistent evidenced based practice presented to all who attended. Thought provoking discussions enabled reflective practice. Appropriate amount of time given to each speaker and discussion.

Elizabeth, IRO Manager

Great event. The theme of having an effective “narrative” proved an interesting perspective to take. My favourites for the day were Brigid Featherstone’s presentation, (the current narrative that poverty and social class are not important in the scheme of things has had a very negative affect on practice); and Jadwiga Leigh’s presentation about the dysfunctional team.

Thank you very much for such a relevant and interesting day.

Daniel, IRO Manager

I was very impressed by the quality of the challenge offered by all of the presenters. We have a professional duty to work for social justice and to advocate for those with whom we work and the speakers gave us information to help us do this.

Christopher, IRO