Happy 21st Birthday CAPS! The Children And Parents’ Service in Manchester is one of the longest sustainable implementations of Incredible Years in the world.
Following IY Trainer Caroline White’s appointment as Specialist Advisor to the House of Commons Select Committee for Science and Technology on Early Intervention, the committee has published it’s report, highlighting CAPS’ implementation of Incredible Years parenting groups as a model example of early intervention services.
The committee writes:
The Children and Parents Service (CAPS) in Manchester has been identified by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence as a service that has achieved success in recognising and managing antisocial behaviour and conduct disorders in children and young people. CAPS is a jointly commissioned, multi-agency, early intervention service for pre-school children and their families. The service identifies early social and emotional problems in pre-school children, provides thorough psychological assessment for them and then offers intervention as appropriate. Families can be initially referred to the CAPS service from multi-agency staff across the early years workforce; CAPS psychologists provide one day training to frontline staff to improve communication across the workforce and establish referral pathways as well as to develop a consistent approach to parent support strategies across the workforce. CAPS also conducts outreach work to raise awareness and engage with local families. Referred families are assessed using the Eyberg Child Behaviour Inventory, the Beck Depression Inventory and the Abidin Parenting Stress Index as standardised and validated outcome tools to measure child behaviour problems, parental depression and parental stress respectively, as well as the ‘Index of Need’ tool to identify families at risk of developing any of these problems. Where families meet the thresholds for intervention, CAPS uses the ‘Incredible Years’ Parent Programmes, a series of evidence-based interventions which focus on:
- strengthening parenting competencies to improve the parent-child relationship;
- promoting children’s academic, emotional and social skills; and
- reducing conduct problems.
CAPS additionally provides ‘wrap-around’ support to help families complete the courses, such as the provision of childcare or interpreting services, and aims to offer seamless access to other services from which families would benefit.
High parent retention rates are achieved by the programme, with around 81% completing it. As well as reducing the prevalence of clinical conditions and the proportion of families at risk of developing clinical problems, the programme was found to also help parents engage in work or education. Three months after completing the course, 24% of parents were back in work, 21% were attending college and 10% were doing voluntary work.
Between September 2017 and August 2018, CAPS delivered 75 Incredible Years parent courses to approximately 989 parents of 0–4 year olds. The impact of these interventions, as determined by the proportions of families in the clinical ranges for each of the outcome measures before and after the intervention, are shown in table below.
Impact of CAPS intervention on clinical conditions and risk factors
Cheers to Dr. Caroline White and the Manchester CAPS team!