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Common Assessment Framework - information for young people

What is the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) process and how does it benefit young people?

Why might I need a common assessment?

Sometimes you may need help or extra support to sort out a problem. You don't need to feel alone. The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) involves listening to you to find out what help you need, and what is working well in your life.

An action plan is then put together with you to make sure you get the right sort of help. The common assessment is there to help you but, if you don't want to take part in the assessment you don't have to - it really is up to you.

How will the assessment help me?

The assessment process will help to work out what support you might need. This could be a learning mentor for help with school-work, or drugs worker for help with a drugs problem. If your mum, dad or carer needs help to look after you, the assessment can also support them. The common assessment means talking to people who know you, like nurses and teachers. If they can all talk together, they can find the best support for you early on, before any problems become bigger.

As the assessment is shared by your workers you will only have to tell your story once, rather than lots of times to different people!

How does it work?

If you agree, someone who knows you will arrange a time to talk to you and listen to what you think would be helpful. For example, this person could be a school nurse or youth worker. They will write down what is talked about on a form and give you a copy of the form. Then, if you agree, all the people who can help you will work together to give you the support you need.

Who will have information about me?

As a rule the information on your assessment will not be shared with anyone else unless you agree. However there may be times when the people working with you need to do so, for example:

  • when they need to find out urgently if you or someone else is at risk of harm
  • to help you or someone else who is at risk of harm
  • to help stop a crime

How will I know who is doing what, and when?

If there are lots of people helping you, one of these people may be your 'lead professional'. This person will tell you what is happening, listen to any worries and support you. This person will also support the people who are helping you. You can have a say in who should be your lead professional.

More information

If you want to speak to someone about the common assessment process you can talk to the people working with you.

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