voice of the child (VoC)

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general term used to express how we go about creating meaningful engagement with our children and young people. Day to day direct work focuses on listening to and responding to what children and young people say is important to them, take their views into account and consider their wishes.

The right of a child to be heard is included in the UN Convention of Rights. The Children’s Act 2004 emphasises the importance of speaking to the child or young person as part of any assessment and gathering their views has been consistently highlighted in lessons learned from serious case reviews.

Capturing the voice of the child not only refers to what children say directly, but to many other aspects of their presentation. It means seeing their experiences from their point of view. This is important for child focused work because when children feel listened to, plans are more successful when they are involved, and better safeguarding decisions are made for the child

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