For the first time, IMAS has set up a specific service for families with young people at risk aged between 13 and 18.

Aug 8, 2022 | Current affairs, Featured, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The programme has 45 places and aims to prevent the disintegration of the family unit.

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Working with families to help them improve their coexistence and guarantee the wellbeing of adolescents within their families is the main priority of the Mallorcan Institute of Social Affairs (IMAS), which for the first time has arranged a Crisis Intervention Service for Minors between the ages of 13 and 18, to be carried out by the CAIF Association (Centro de Atención Integral a la Familia) for a period of two years, extendable for a further two.

The Councillor for Social Rights and President of IMAS, Sofia Alonso, explained that “we continue to support specialised services that provide real solutions to the needs of citizens. With this new programme, we will offer immediate attention for families with adolescents in their care, with the aim of improving situations that endanger the integrity of the family nucleus and so that they can live together normally”.

IMAS has arranged 45 places with the CAIF Association, which can be accessed by any adolescent in Mallorca who requires it, regardless of whether or not they have any protection measure. In this sense, families who consider it appropriate can go directly to IMAS to ask for help if the adolescent in their care is at moderate risk of lack of protection caused by a relational crisis.

The professionals of the IMAS Childhood and Family Area will assess each situation and will refer the cases that require the new resource to the CAIF Association. For each of them, a specific plan will be drawn up, which will include two types of interventions:

  • Focused on adolescents: support in their social and personal maturation process; training to prevent risky and/or problematic behaviours; promotion of responsible attitudes for their own health in a broad sense (emotional, social and psychological well-being); information on prevention of addictive behaviours; tackling stressful situations; and learning in attitudes of self-control and decision-making.
  • Focused on parents or legal guardians: counselling and training to prevent disruptive and addictive behaviours and other behavioural alterations; development of strategies for the management and tackling of stressful situations; learning in attitudes of self-control and dialogue; promotion and increase of social and personal skills; stabilisation of family relationships; promotion of community support and social integration.

Among the main characteristics of the families targeted by this service, the following stand out:

  • Their sons or daughters are in a situation of adolescent crisis with the risk of provoking a family breakdown.
  • The possible existence of episodic and occasional mistreatment derived from the crisis situation.
  • The loss of parental control with a maximum duration of three months.
  • Family overflow and lack of functionality of its own resources.
  • Gender violence.
  • Mild abuse and other situations that may benefit from the service.

In addition to families who request it, IMAS may also consider that adolescents who are urgently admitted to a residential first reception service during the weekend and it is found that the problem is serious but an urgent and punctual professional intervention is necessary before returning home, should participate in this programme.

This Crisis Intervention Service set up by IMAS has a team of at least four people: a social educator and a full-time psychologist, and a director and a part-time social worker.