All about Every Child Matters


Every Child Matters : The Core of our Childrens' Services staff agency ethos

As a care worker you need to know about the organisation called Every Child Matters as there may be times when you need to liaise with children’s services. Every Child Matters (ECM) has been in existence since 2003 and is a government initiative that resulted partly due to the death of Victoria Climbié.

Protecting children and young adults

It marks major developments in the field of children’s services and as a result of three government papers on the topic; the Children Act 2004 came into being. ECM aims to protect all children and young adults up to the age of 19, or 24 if they have disabilities.

In essence, ECM exists to ensure that every child will:

  • stay safe
  • be healthy
  • enjoy and achieve
  • make a positive contribution
  • achieve economic well-being

Covering all children’s organisations

Each of these issues is dealt with by a detailed set of guidelines which organisations must follow. These may include:

  • Children’s centres
  • Early years establishments
  • Schools and Nurseries
  • Children’s social work services
  • Primary and secondary health services
  • Play schemes
  • Child & Adolescent Mental Health services (CAMHS)

Before these guidelines were put in place, research indicated that child professionals were likely to fall foul of mistakes due to them not networking or communicating effectively with each other. ECM takes control of this, maintaining that all professionals should be constantly aware of the impact that their own service and that of others can make upon the lives of children and young people.

Promotes sharing of information

ECM enforces the fact that every child should be enabled to work towards the policy’s central goals. All maintained schools have taken this policy on board as well as some independent schools.

In general, the ECM policy brings together mixed groups of people who work with children, ensuring that they share information and promote the needs of every child, enabling them to live a full, happy and healthy life. It also takes account of the fact that children should be allowed to discuss things that are important to them, as in the past this was often not done at all or simply minimized.

Every Child Matters has made much needed and crucial changes to the way that young children and adults are now looked after and protected in the UK and will continue to do so going forward.

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