Intensive Family Therapy (IFT)

Criteria and referral details

Intensive Family Therapy or IFT is a family therapy programme which works intensively with children aged 9-17 and their carers for a number of months, meeting them multiple times a week to try and help resolve a range of issues and avoid entering care or custody, being exploited, or becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training).

Who we may be able to work with:

  • Young people at risk of placement (care or custody) due to their own antisocial behaviours, including verbal/physical aggression, property damage, missing episodes, substance/alcohol misuse, stealing, fire setting, associating with peers who are a negative influence, weapon possession/use, inappropriate use of social media, racist/homophobic abuse, school attendance concerns, behavioural difficulties in school, Not in Education Employment or Training (NEET).
  • Young people at risk of or being exploited – criminal/sexual/gang affiliation/serious youth violence.
  • Young people involved with the Youth Justice System.
  • Young people aged between 9 and 17-years-old.

Who we can’t work with:

  • Young people living independently, or where a primary carer can’t be identified.
  • Young people referred primarily due to concerns related to suicidal, homicidal, or psychotic behaviours. 
  • Juvenile sex offenders (sex offending if there’s no other delinquent/antisocial behaviour).
  • Young people with a moderate/severe diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder.
  • If the main concern is about the young person’s mental health or developmental delay.
  • Children if concerns are only at seen home, or only at school, or only in the community.

If the young person presents with behaviours in the first list but nothing in the second list, please refer. You will then be contacted for a case discussion. (If you have concerns around exploitation, please ensure you have submitted the exploitation screening tool to Empower U before you send a referral to IFT).

To refer, please copy and paste the headings below into an email, fill in the information then send it to (you can also email to request a case discussion first):

  • Referrer:
  • Name of referrer:
  • Job role/Agency:
  • Email address:
  • Telephone number:
  • Child or young person being referred:
  • Name:
  • Date of birth:
  • Eclipse ID (If known/applicable - this is their BCT social work ID number):
  • Which concerning behaviours are they currently presenting with and where (e.g. home, school community)?