The IMAS therapeutic service for children and families renovates the spaces and reinforces the staff of professionals to improve psychological and emotional support.

Feb 9, 2022 | Post, Current affairs, Featured, Revista Lloseta, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The number of specialists is increased by 40% with the incorporation of the UVASI and a multipurpose room and a playground for therapies with families.

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The Mallorcan Institute of Social Affairs (IMAS) is committed to strengthening the Therapeutic Section of Childhood and Family (STIF) by expanding the team of specialised professionals and updating its spaces with the aim of optimising therapies and programmes aimed at children and families in need of psychological support due to mistreatment, abuse, violence or any other type of neglect.

Its staff has increased by 40% and there are now twenty-five people working in this service that offers therapeutic intervention to families with an open file in the IMAS. Specifically, the number of psychomotor therapists has been increased by two, the team of psychotherapists has been increased to 13 and an additional person has joined the administrative department, which now has three people. Moreover, with the incorporation, last June, of the Unit for the Assessment of Child Sexual Abuse (UVASI), the staff of psychologists has been reinforced with six more people.

The president of the Consell de Mallorca, Catalina Cladera, together with the councillor for Social Rights and president of IMAS, Sofia Alonso, toured the service’s premises today and took an interest in the projects being developed. The island director of Infancia i Familia, Mari Ángeles Fernández, accompanied them during the visit.

“We are reinforcing this service with new and improved facilities and incorporating more professionals dedicated to providing comprehensive help to children and young people who have been through traumatic situations,” said President Cladera. “It is about putting all available resources to reverse the consequences that the various situations of lack of protection have left in children and also to work with families,” she said.

The facilities at the STIF headquarters, which also has branches in Manacor and Inca, have six psychotherapy rooms, three specific abuse therapy rooms and a room equipped for psychomotor skills with a surface area of over 60 m2, which has recently incorporated a multi-purpose room for groups and meetings, where clinical team supervision, training and group therapy, among other uses, are carried out. The service is complemented by a recently inaugurated fully adapted children’s playground where family therapies are carried out with younger children.

“The new playground allows us to take the therapies outside”, explains Sofia Alonso, “this environment helps them to improve, because sometimes it is complicated to attend to children who have suffered traumatic situations within the four walls of a room”.

The president of IMAS also added that “at STIF we work in a comprehensive manner, applying individualised therapies according to the needs of each child, which is why we have reinforced the teams. We now provide complete coverage and can thus better adapt to their schedules and their day-to-day lives”.

A total of 412 children and 271 families were assisted in the different therapeutic programmes in 2021. Right now, the number of users, all of them under 18 years of age and with open protection files, is 328, 177 of whom are in residential foster care, 65 in family foster care and 86 in a situation of risk. Another 29 attend psychomotricity sessions.

Currently, this therapeutic section works in three programmes designed to respond to the specific and concrete needs of the users. The first is specialised in the treatment of the psychological trauma of the child or young person caused by situations of neglect, mistreatment, negligence, abuse and/or abandonment. A second one, of family intervention on the disorders of the condition and improvement of parental competences, with the aim of favouring the maintenance or reintegration of the minor with the family.

And a third one, of psychomotor intervention which intervenes by means of specialised techniques with minors who present psycho-traumatisms as a result of the maltreatment they have suffered. These are oriented towards the recognition of the expression of the body, gestures, movements and words with the gaze, listening to the corporal discourse of the senses, perceptions and spontaneous emotions in order to reconnect with feeling and living.