Ecclesville Parenting Support Programme

Ecclesville provides accommodation for 7 mothers/fathers aged 18+.  We offer practical support and preparation for independent living. The accommodation consists of seven self-contained fully furnished bedsits that is centrally heated. There is a communal TV room and enclosed garden at the rear of the building. The bedsits are self-catering.

We recognise that some parents may have specific needs and we may not have the level of support or skills necessary to address these needs. In such cases, we refer to specialist services for additional supports such as mental health or disability services.

The outcomes for the parent varies and is guided by their needs and skill set when arriving at the service. A comprehensive support plan is drawn up and goals are set accordingly. At all times we work within Children First, National Guidelines for the Protection and Welfare of Children.

Aims and Objectives

We aim to support lone parents by teaching them the necessary skills to care for their children and to find and keep a home. We do this by providing support packages, which are led by the needs identified by the parent and their referring agency.


We work within a multi-disciplinary setting using joint working partnerships to ensure the parent receives the best service. The approach we use is person-centred which includes the hopes and aspirations of the mothers as well as information obtained from the referring agency. We work with parents in the following areas:

Finance: Parents are shown how to budget weekly, pay bills, set up bank and saving accounts, and debt management.

Parenting: We offer advice to parents on how to best care for their baby and work closely with the public health nurse and social workers in this regard. Ecclesville is not an assessment centre. However, it can be used as a step down from our assessment centre.

Health & Hygiene: Doctors/hospital visits, women’s health including contraception, smoking, healthy eating, mental wellbeing, baby’s health including diet, immunization and childhood illnesses.

Social Skills: Dealing with conflict, use of leisure time, making friends, family mediation.

Health & Safety: Personal security, keeping safe outside the home, providing a safe home for a baby.

Household Skills: Maintaining a tenancy, keeping a home clean, tidy and domestic skills.

Carr’s Early Years Education


The early years programme offers a service to 25 children from 3 months to 5 years. We use  Aistear and Siolta as a framework to ensure the best possible outcomes for the children. By this we mean that the emphasis of our work is to support the children at their current developmental level in a setting where they have opportunities to choose materials and ideas within their play. Staff working with the children see themselves as facilitators to the children’s play.

Aims and Objectives

Carr’s Child and Family Services are committed to providing outstanding service to all children who use the service. We recognise the central importance of good quality early years’ service in transforming the lives of children through play, positive transitions and supportive adult-child interactions. Our staff team adopt an inclusive approach with families, which includes the use of a key worker system, participation and consultation. The overarching aim is to ensure that children within our service are happy, safe, well, and receive personalised care, in an environment, which is homely, safe, stimulating and nurturing.

To achieve these aims, the service is based on the following objectives:

  • The provision of well planned, stable and high-quality early years’ service with a range of stimulating and challenging activities for the children.
  • The provision of a robust vetting procedure for all persons providing direct care to the children.
  • The provision of a qualified staff team that is trained, professional and caring.
  • A child’s wishes and feelings will be taken into account, and children will be encouraged to participate in decisions about their care.
  • Ensuring each child is valued as an individual and given personalised support in line with their individual needs and background in order to develop their identity, self-confidence and self-worth.

How we take care of your child:

  • Monitor each child’s progress.
  • Organise indoor and outdoor activities to expand and enrich children’s interests
  • Build children’s self-confidence and self-esteem.
  • Support children in finding their own ways to solve problems
  • Help children become aware of cultural diversity in the community, encouraging  respect for each other’s values and customs
  • Integrate children with special needs, wherever possible.
  • Respect each child as an individual, taking into account each child’s needs
  • Each child has a key worker

How we work with parents:

  • Keep you informed about the day-to-day running of the service
  • Help you become involved in your child’s learning and development
  • Ensure that our service is in accordance with the latest standards for care and education
  • Ensure that our staff are selected, trained and supervised to meet the needs of the children in their care.
  • Invite parents to stay and play with their children
  • Organise workshops on play
  • The child’s key worker meets with the parents
  • Parents are invited to join us on outings
  • We have a child protection and welfare policy in place
Babies, Toddlers, Preschool
Four separate areas of the service are dedicated specifically to serve four different age groups. The Baby Room provides childcare for children from three months to 2 years; our Toddler Room is specially designed for use by children from 1-2 years; the Pre-School Room is dedicated to children over the age of two.
Meals and Menus
We provide children with breakfast, lunch and tea and these meals are freshly prepared on-site. A sample weekly menu can be found in the main hallway.
Opening Hours

We are open each weekday from 8:15 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

We recognise that some children may have specific needs that we may not have the skills necessary or the level of expertise for. In such cases we refer to specialist services for additional supports.

At all times we work within Children First, National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children.

Hawthorn Residential Family Assessment

Hawthorn provides community and residential assessments and interventions to parents with young children. The service is targeted at those parents who face difficulties in caring for their children and where Tusla may be initiating care proceedings or where care proceedings are already underway. 

The residential centre can accommodate three families and their children. Staffing ratios are high, and the assessment is tailor-made to meet the individual needs of each family.

The assessment is structured to allow the families to take part in planned programmes. Direct work sessions include child safety, domestic violence, alcohol misuse, relationships, anger management, play and child development and attachment. 

An understanding of a family’s links within their own community forms a key part of our work. Therefore we work collaboratively with appropriate local agencies to identify and establish ongoing support links.

Aims and Objectives
  • To provide comprehensive time limited  residential assessment of a parent’s capacity to parent their child or children.
  • To ensure that the child’s needs remain central to the assessment at all times
  • To promote opportunities for young children in State care to return to live with their parents
  • To ensure all assessments have clear objectives which are understood by parents and professionals.

Hawthorn provides the following assessments and interventions:

  • Residential parenting assessments
  • Community-based Parenting Assessments
  • Court directed assessments
  • Pre-birth and new parent assessments
  • Reunification with the birth parent
  • Community-Based Assessments
  • Emergency Placements

To undertake a comprehensive assessment, Hawthorn uses a variety of tools to inform the Framework of Assessment model, including:

  • Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families
  • PAMS assessment, Dr Sue McGaw
  • Graded Care Profile
  • Marte Meo
  • Direct observation
  • Home Inventory
  • Psychological Assessments
  • The Family Assessment Framework
  • Safeguarding Children Assessment and Analysis Framework  
  • Safe Guarding Assessment and Analysis Framework
  • Adult Attachment Interview,
  • Infant CARE Index
  • The Meaning of the Child Interview
  • Hidden Harm – Motivation to change 
  • CASP-R The Capacity and Ability to Supervise and Protect – Risk Framework

This is not an exhaustive list, and we constantly upskill our staff to enhance our assessment practices to keep up to date with current research and practice.

Our Service

We provide a service to the following families:

  • Parents with children on child protection plans where a residential placement is necessary to protect the child or to assist the parent in how to do so.
  • Parents with children for whom Tusla are considering court proceedings.
  • Parents for whom the Courts have requested an assessment of parenting skills.
  • Parents who because of learning disability, mental health, or problems with drugs/alcohol abuse are having sufficient difficulty in caring for their child and a residential placement is necessary to assess the long-term arrangements for the child’s upbringing.
  • Women who due for discharge from maternity hospitals and where professionals have concerns for the babies welfare.
Criteria for Admission
  • The family’s understanding and commitment to the assessment
  • Availability
  • The level of risk, including adult violence and addiction control
  • The opinion of professional reports
  • We will endeavour to hasten the process. However, good planning and preparation are key to a successful placement.

At all times we work within Children First, National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children.


Carr’s Child and Family Services CLG
5 Northbrook Road
Dublin 6
D06 HP28


Registered address: 5 Northbrook Road, Ranelagh, Dublin 6, D06 HP28. Charity Number: 20001179.

Company number: 592414. Company Limited by Guarantee.

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