Five Rivers

Psychodynamically Informed Practice

We believe that to attain outstanding outcomes for children and young people who maybe experiencing psychological distress, there is a core need, to harness the application of psychological knowledge to assist in transforming children and young people’s lives.

This knowledge is harnessed by the practitioners across Five Rivers integrated services to provides shared understanding and language. We use transactional analysis to underpin this framework.

A key element across our services in the focus on the relational aspects of the interventions provided by the team. This encompasses the task of therapeutic care (structure, boundaries, guidance, support) and attunement (therapeutic communication e.g. understanding transferenceand re-enactment etc).

Such work requires consultancy and support to the staff team, and this is provided on a weekly basis by a member of the clinical service team. This support provides a ‘thinking’ space to review the work with each individual child/young person, and ensure that the goals set are being attained.

For this reason we have a team of psychological practitioners (Child and adolescent Psychotherapists) who provide support and guidance to the staff teams in developing strategies to improve emotional well-being.

We consult with Psychiatry and Psychological (Educational, Forensic and Counselling) specialists to provide support as required.

Our team of practitioners and clinical supervisors have extensive experience in developing and advising on clinical packages of care (family court work), therapeutic programmes which have been implemented by government agencies (Scotland, New Zealand) and seek to guide the advancement of knowledge relating to effective treatment approaches for children and young people (UKCP Children’s Faculty).

These practitioners are highly experienced in working with looked-after children:


  • Use a range of strategies and techniques which are consistent with up to date evidence based practice e.g. NICE Guidance
  • Assist in providing responsive support to our teams as they are consistently available
  • Provide psychotherapeutic interventions following a clear assessment of what are the core needs (Focused Targeted Interventions for the best outcomes)
  • Liaise with CAMHS and PCT
  • Provide their psychological expertise input into risk assessments, individual crisis management plans, care plans etc.