Children coming to the homes and school will be referred from social services, health and education departments throughout the country. They will be admitted in accordance with the Children Act (1989) and Care Standards Act 2000.

Some of the children who are referred to Amicus may have experienced emotional and physical neglect and/or abuse from a very early age. They will have certainly been deprived of an appropriate, consistent adult attachment figure and the corresponding emotional ‘containment’ essential for healthy emotional and intellectual development. Due to this they will often have many of the following characteristics:

  1. Manifestly unable to manage themselves and their feelings and unable to allow other people to help them with this.
  2. An inability to form positive trusting relationships with significant adults or other children.
  3. May appear self-centred and with little sense of the needs of others.
  4. An inability to think about the possible consequences of their behaviour or take responsibility for their actions.
  5. Will often manifest extremely difficult and anti-social behaviors. Appearing frequently as either overly withdrawn and passive or overly aggressive and disruptive.
  6. An inability to genuinely play or be creative, either with themselves or with other children.
  7. Unlikely to be able to manage any form of frustration.
  8. Have difficulty in age appropriate concentration and interest or ability in learning.
  9. Have poor self-esteem and sense of self worth and therefore little experience or belief in personal achievement or success.

These are children who will have frequently found education extremely threatening, leading to low educational achievement. This and their possibly disruptive, disturbing, frightening or sometimes even overly withdrawn behaviour may have led to exclusion from mainstream schools.

Amicus is equipped to accept and work with referrals for children with moderate physical difficulties and other special needs, such as mild learning disabilities.