Personal Qualities  

The practitioner's personal qualities are of the utmost importance to clients. Many of the personal qualities considered important in the provision of services have an ethical or moral component and are therefore considered as virtues or good personal qualities.  

It is inappropriate to prescribe that all practitioners possess these qualities, since it is fundamental that these personal qualities are deeply rooted in the person concerned and developed out of personal commitment rather than the requirement of an external authority. Personal qualities to which practitioners are strongly encouraged to aspire include:  

Empathy with children, adolescents and their carers: the ability to communicate understanding of another person's experience from that person's perspective. Carer is used generically to include anyone who looks after a child at any time and includes for example nurses, teachers and social workers.

Sincerity: a personal commitment to consistency between what is professed and what is done.

Integrity: commitment to being moral in dealings with others, personal straightforwardness, honesty and coherence.

Resilience: the capacity to work with the client's concerns without being personally diminished.

Respect: showing appropriate esteem to others and their understanding of themselves - not to patronise.

Humility: the ability to assess accurately and acknowledge one's own strengths and weaknesses and to show this to clients.

Competence: the effective deployment of the skills and knowledge needed to do what is required given the resources available.

Fairness: the consistent application of appropriate criteria to inform decisions and actions.

Wisdom: possession of sound judgement that informs practice.

Courage: the capacity to act in spite of known fears, risks and uncertainty.  

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