Behavior modification is the use of demonstrated behaviour change techniques to increase or decrease the frequency of behaviours. This might involve altering an individual's behaviours and reactions to stimuli through positive and negative reinforcement of adaptive behaviour and/or the reduction of behavior through its extinction, consequences and/or satiation. Most behavior modification programs currently used are those based on Applied behavior analysis (ABA).
Pathfinders, which are the Surecare model of behaviour reward/modification programmes, are a tailor made system incorporating behaviours and daily tasks that are specific to the young person’s care and management plans.
The following is the procedure we use to identify behaviours to be modified and how we implement a programme.
We identify the areas where our young person has difficulties, where they feel challenged in managing a specific behaviour or meeting a specific boundary. Then we Prioritize dealing with the behaviors we feel are most important or consider will enhance the quality of the young person’s progress, development and ability to thrive.We begin the initial pathfinder behaviour modification program concentrating on only two or three behaviours as it would be unfair and impractical to work on all of the young person’s behaviours at once. This is a staged process monitored and reviewed monthly and one which celebrates progress each step of the way.
We identify the areas where our young person has strengths and then we incorporate these into the programme. This is so they have a realistic chance of success at the end of the week. Celebrating achievement is the key to motivating the young person toward engagement of the programme and continuing it so they can see how progress can benefit them.
The Pathfinder program works. Staff monitor and review it at monthly periods adapting it to the changing needs and achievements of the individual young person to ensure it is successful.
We use weekly and monthly key working sessions and informal one-to- one discussions to talk to the young person about their Pathfinder and all of the positives that it brings. We make any changes to the programme after discussion with the young person so they have full involvement and inclusion. This encourages themto “own” it so it becomes the young person’s personal program of achievement and not the company’s.
Fitfth and finally
It is imperative that we are consistent as a team and Pathfinders are talked about and handed over daily. Points are tallied up at the end of the day by the staff on shift. Young people should have access at all times during each day to discuss and observe their programmes.
As young people achieve and move towards independence, the Pathfinder can be amended to ensure it is always age appropriate to meet the growing and continuing needs of each young person in our care.
Rewards and Consequences
The Pathfinder is a positive behavior programme. Points can only ever be earned - they are never taken away. The points earned at the end of the week are totalled and then the young person get their gold silver or bronze award. Staff will always support progress by discussing with the young person areas for development and how targets can meet next time with a positive and assertive approach to the programme.
This is what a young person can earn on the Pathfinder.
If 13 – 15 years old
AWARD HOW MUCH EXTRAS
Basic £7.00 None
Bronze £10.00 None
Silver £15.00 None
Gold £20.00 Reward Voucher
Clothing Voucher £5
If 16 years or older, the Pathfinder still allows a young person to earn up to a total of £30 per week but the reward system is individually tailored individually and this is evolved with the key worker and the senior team. Once the young person is in employment, SureCare may support them in applying for a personal bank account to save their money.