At First Blue Healthcare, we are passionate about creating good outcomes for the future and recognise that for this to occur; mental well-being should be at the forefront of our care. That is why our staff are trained in PACE therapy. This means that staff can support the young people in their homes to feel safe and secure with adults and reflect upon their own thoughts, allowing them to get closer to others emotionally and trust them, helping them throughout their life.
What is PACE, and what does it stand for?
PACE stands for:
This theory was developed by Dr Dan Hughes, who worked with children who had experienced trauma. The four key principles have the overall aim of helping young people connect more with the emotional side of their brain before they engage with other areas.
Playfulness - Connecting with our young people in a light-hearted sense, such as play, is a massive part of PACE therapy. It takes away any pressure the young people may feel and puts emotional connections into a more relaxed environment. This helps them to feel more connected and trusting towards the adults around them and gives them an experience of fun, love and, most importantly, positive communication with adults.
Acceptance - Acceptance is a fundamental aspect of a young person feeling safe with us. This is about our staff members accepting, free from judgement, a young person’s feelings, thoughts and motives underpinning their behaviour. Our staff are trained not always to accept the behaviour, but to teach our young people not to be ashamed of any inner feelings.
Curiosity - Curiosity helps children become more aware of their inner selves, reflecting upon the reasons for their behaviour and then being able to communicate this with one of our trained staff members. This is always without judgement.
Empathy - Empathy allows our staff to communicate to our young people that their feelings are important and to be emotionally available to them when they need it.
PACE to support staff
As well as supporting our young people, we want to make sure that our staff are best supported during their time with us. Giving our children access to therapy and support systems allows them to feel safe and secure with all of the staff members within their homes. This helps reduce the amount of challenging behaviours sometimes presented as they are better equipped to deal with their emotions, creating a supportive atmosphere for staff and young people.