What is Secure Base?
The Secure Base Model was developed by Prof Gillian Schofield and Mary Beek, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK and has been adopted by a number of care providers in the UK.
Oak Lodge Fostering Services are the first agency to bring this therapeutic model to Ireland.
The Secure Base Model provides a positive framework for therapeutic caregiving, which helps infants, children and young people to move towards greater security and builds resilience. It focuses on the interactions that occur between caregivers and children on a day to day, minute by minute basis in the home environment. But it also considers how those relationships can enable the child to develop competence in the outside world of school, peer group and community.
Each of the five caregiving dimensions can be associated with a particular developmental benefit for the child:
|Caregiving Dimension||Developmental benefit|
|Availability||Helping the child to trust|
|Sensitivity||Helping the child to manage feelings and behaviour|
|Acceptance||Building the child’s self esteem|
|Co-operation||Helping the child to feel effective – and be co-operative|
|Family membership||Helping the child to belong|
Research (Beek and Schofield 2004) has demonstrated that, over time, positive caregiving across the five dimensions provides a secure base from which the child can explore, learn and develop.