Bright Spots surveys shine a light on what matters
In January 2022, the CELCIS Bright Spots survey programme was launched to identify what was important to care-experienced children and young people in Scotland.
Ten months on, CELCIS has provided a video update on the programme, with input from Aberdeenshire and East Ayrshire councils.
Care-experienced children and young people, aged 4-18 years old, were invited to complete the ‘Your Life, Your Care’ surveys, through which the following findings emerged…
Our children and young people feel safe, supported and listened to…
97% of children and young people feel safe in the home they live in, and said the adults who care for them have an interest in their learning and education.
The overwhelming majority of children and young people also feel they have a trusted adult they can turn to for support.
Finally, these children and young people said they enjoyed fun activities, that they were taught valuable life skills and were included in decisions made about their lives.
Areas for improvement…
This being said, there is still work to be done to improve the experiences of children and young people in care, as shown through the following survey responses…
Children and young people worry about the stigma surrounding the care system, and would prefer that social workers refrain from wearing lanyards when out in public with them. Many also stated they were worried about being bullied by other children, again because of the stigma surrounding the care system.
Some also said that they don’t fully understand why they are in care.
Finally, some children and young people don’t feel they are given enough responsibility or that they aren’t fully trusted by the adults around them.
Our plan going forward…
Using the survey responses, we will now take the following action…
Our social workers will continue to carry their ID badges and lanyards but will no longer wear or have them on display while out with the children and young people they support. They will also discuss and agree with the child/young person how they wish their relationship to be described to other people.
We will strive to fully explain to children and young people the reason/s they are in care, and will do so in the most tactful, compassionate and respectful manner.
We will continue to support care-experienced children and young people’s education, including checking in with them regularly to ensure they have everything they need to achieve their potential at school or college.
Finally, our social workers will increase opportunities for children and young people to show that they can be trusted, which we hope will boost their self-esteem and strengthen their confidence.
Watch the full video update or read our previous article to find out more about the Bright Spots programme.