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A young person’s journey to attend the Care Experienced Conference

Paul, a fostering support worker, shares his experiences.

As part of Five Rivers Midlands and North foster care team, Paul worked with our participation officer and social services to enable a young person in our care to attend a conference earlier this year. He writes: 

“In April 2019 I had the privilege of accompanying K,  one of our young people, to the first Care Experienced Conference  held in the UK – at Liverpool Hope University.  This was an opportunity for care experienced people of all ages, from all four corners of the UK plus Ireland, the Channel Islands and even Australia, to make their voices heard.

“The day featured workshops covering such topics as mental and physical health and wellbeing, promoting positive care, and how to improve engagement and consultation. Within the workshops, delegates shared and compared their experiences of what being in care used to be like with what it is like today and expressed their hopes for the future. K. took the opportunity to express his views on improving support for mental wellbeing. 

“During breaks, the delegates had the chance to visit an exhibition of thought-provoking, powerful artistic and literary works – a celebration of the creativity of care experienced people. 

“It was great to see the exhibition included a display of the masks and poetry produced for ‘The Masks We Wear’ – an art film by our youth council.masks on display

What’s next?

“The Care Experienced Conference team plan to share their findings with the people who have the power to bring about changes to the care system. Ian Dickson, Chair of the Conference said this on Breakfast News the following morning, ‘Care experienced people offer a reservoir of wisdom to help bring about change’. (View the interview on YouTube)

“This may be the first conference of its kind but, judging by the response to this one, it won’t be the last.”

The Care Experienced Conference report is available to download:

Paul Revis

Fostering Support Worker – Chesterfield

Following the conference,  K. interviewed the Chair, Ian Dickson, for our podcast series Care to Listen?

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