Stand up for me and be brave: what young people want from social workers -Rod Kippen in the Guardiam
I’ve been supporting young people in care as an advocate for seven years. As part of this, I help young people to change their support and environment. Many of the concerns they raise are widespread in the care system. Some things that need to change are about the whole ethos of the system, so there is no quick fix; but a questioning of the system and disruption of the power dynamics within it is vital. And for many young people, once they have changed their own lives, they want to make changes more generally for others. They don’t want the difficulties they have faced to happen to others.
A lovely piece in the #Guardian by non other than our @careexpconf fellow arty chap @rodkippen Stand up for me and be brave: what young people want from social workers with the following fantastic advice from young people to social workers:
Stand up for me; I want you on my side.
Just because things are always done one way does not mean they are right for me. The care system is not perfect and needs to change continually, we might be the ones to make it better.
Having friends is vital to me; don’t forget this when making plans.
Life story work is important; I need to understand my past to move forward.
Make time to listen to me. Put your notepad down.
Hide your work ID card when you go out with me.
Don’t only see me when I have been in trouble, when you need information or because you have to. This is my life.
My relationship with family will probably last longer than the one with children’s services, help me work out these relationships if and when I need support.
Understand that having lots of changes of social workers makes it difficult to talk with someone new, as I don’t know how long you will be around for.