Building a community of practice for services supporting parents who have experienced recurrent care proceedings

Project Dates

April 2020 - March 2021


Public Health England

Project Summary

The Centre, working as part of a consortium of organisations has secured a grant from Public Health England (PHE) to develop a Community of Practice for practitioners working with parents who have had children removed from their care through public family law proceedings. The funding has been secured under PHE’s Reproductive Health, Sexual Health and HIV Innovation Fund and will particularly focus on building practice responses to the reproductive and sexual health needs of this population. Following on from our Vulnerable Birth Mothers and Recurrent Care Proceedings work, this project aims to develop public health perspectives on supporting reproductive and sexual health in the context of developmental and relational trauma, stigma and complicated grief. The Community of Practice aims to support an emergent, often isolated workforce to meet PHE priorities for the sexual health of this population.

This 12-month national project comprises two strands of work:

1: Service Mapping. Providing the first national overview of existing, specialist services for this population.

2: Developing and online Community of Practice (CoP) and open access resource repository for practitioners working with parents who have had children removed from their care through court proceedings.

The project builds on the Centre’s strong track record of research and development in this field, including recurrent care proceedings for mothers and fathers, and infants who become looked after in England, Wales, and Scotland.

Research Team

Claire Mason (Research Fellow/Lancaster lead)

Karen Broadhurst (advisor to the project)

External Collaborators

Research in Practice (Project lead)

Essex University


Nuffield Family Justice Observatory

Event: Online Seminar and Panel Discussion, 17th March 2021

Supporting parents who have experienced care proceedings: building an emerging area of practice

When: 17th March 2021, 9:30am - 1:30pm

Where: Online via MS Teams

To book your place, please email: or visit https://www.researchinpractice...

About the event

Over the last year we have been funded by Public Health England to develop a national Community of Practice, bringing together practitioners working with parents who have had children removed from their care through public family law proceedings. This developing area of practice has rich learning to share with colleagues across health and social care keen to build trauma-informed responses in working with parents. 

Join us on 17th March where we will share the results of our service mapping research, discuss with our panel of sector leaders the provision of trauma-informed responses to parents across health, social care and family justice, hear from practitioners and parents who will launch new resources co-developed in the course of the project, and launch the project's website (please note, the website will go live on 17th March 2021). 

The panel includes: Sir Andrew McFarlane (President of the Family Division), Charlotte Ramsden (DCS Salford and incoming ADCS President) and Isabelle Trowler (Chief Social Worker for children and families, DfE).

Recurrent Care Services in England: Where are we now?

New report mapping locally developed services for parents who have experienced recurrent care proceedings in England has been published. 

Working in partnership with Research in Practice, NFJO, Pause and Essex University, this report is part of the ongoing work of the CFJ to support services across England who are working with parents with experience of recurrent care proceedings.

Please take a look at our new site, designed to share learning and resources from the project:


For further details contact Claire Mason (

Would you like to get involved?

Sign up to our mailing list by clicking here

Latest from Twitter