On My Paper ‘Circles – Viscious and Virtuous,’ and Archive Entry ‘The Management of Violence’

Received from Brian Gannon | Added to the site December 2011.
Comments on my paper – Circle – Viscious and Virtuous and on archive entry The Management of Violence

“Morning, John,
Was pleased to discover your web site while browsing for material on some of the “heroes” of my early years in the field of child and youth care.

Recently Craig Fees (of the PETT Archive) contacted me with a view to giving more coverage to “therapeutic community” aspects of working in group care contexts and I readily agreed to join him in such an endeavour with support from our website.

I have been in the field for fifty years and in those years most of our professional and academic reading (here in faraway South Africa) tended to be English rather than that of any other country, so I have naturally been drawn to Wills, Lyward, Beedell, Balbernie & Co, who were at the time working in similar practice territory to mine!
It has been a hard job for many of us to penetrate the strongly behavioural and control focuses encountered in America, but it is good to see some enduring change, perhaps more in Canada where there is a growing awareness of “relational” practice and an understanding of Redl’s “life-space” more in community and “everyday events” terms.

To cut a long story short, as part of CYC-Net (where we regularly get 3500 to 4000 visitors a day and run a discussion list of 3000+ members) we publish a monthly online “journal” called CYC-Online and are committed to making freely available on the web as much helpful and instructive reading as possible. Your article on “Circles, Vicious and Virtuous” on your work at the Cotswold Community, and Dockar-Drysdale’s piece on Management of Violence are just two articles which I think would be most interesting and informative for our readers and I wonder whether you would give us permission to use them?

My co-editor on CYC-Net is Dr Thom Garfat of Montreal, another veteran in the field, who recently visited and spoke at Peper Harrow. The chairman of our Board of Governors is Prof Leon Fulcher who does some work with Kibble in Scotland and also with Foster Care Associates.
In my career I worked in three care agencies, as principal of the last two. I founded South Africa’s National Association of Child Care Workers in the 60s, developed their wide ranging training up to the 90s and through them did some teaching at various colleges around SA and also at the University of South Africa. Started CYC-Net in the mid-1990s.”