South Ayrshire Keeps the Promise
Today is one year since the conclusion of the Independent Care Review, when Scotland committed to #KeepThePromise to its children and families.
The Independent Care Review called for a radical overhaul of Scotland's care system. They published seven reports, with 'The Promise' narrating a vision built on five foundations for change, to transform how Scotland cares for children and families as well as the unpaid and paid workforce.
With cross-party support and broad commitment to #KeepThePromise, Scotland, its statutory agencies, local authorities, third sector and thousands of children and families knew that much needed to change to make sure that all Scotland's children grow up 'loved, safe and respected.'
In South Ayrshire, we're working hard to drive forward our commitment to make positive changes in the way we care for our young people through the South Ayrshire Champions Board and our Corporate Parenting Groups.
The Champions Board provides a platform for looked after young people to have their voices heard, and talk directly to key decision makers to ensure they have a bigger say in the decisions that affect their lives. Through Champions Board activity, young people can draw on their lived experience to influence improvements in services, policies and practices, and challenge the stigma associated with care.
Putting young people in the driving seat in this way is a powerful example of a co-production approach which places relationships at the very heart of delivering services.
The Champions Board have been working closely with the Head of Childrens Health, Care and Justice services, and a range of Council services to raise awareness of The Promise, and have so far have developed 55 local calls to action that will be implemented as part of our community planning activity to really make a difference to care experienced children, young people and their families in the area.
Councillor Peter Henderson, Leader of South Ayrshire Council said: "This is a great opportunity to highlight the fantastic work being carried out by the Champions Board and many other Council services involved in supporting our young people with care experience.
"If the last year has shown us anything, it's that our children, young people and families need us all more than ever to drive forward our commitment to make positive changes."
Councillor Julie Dettbarn, Chair of the Integration Joint Board and Portfolio Holder for Adults Health and Social Care said: "As we celebrate the first birthday of The Promise, it's a perfect time to reflect and reaffirm our collective commitment in South Ayrshire to be great corporate parents to the children and young people in our care.
"For me, not just as a Councillor but also as a proud Kinship Carer, The Promise delivered everything I could ever have hoped for. Every young person should feel loved and valued, and to know that sense of belonging is the foundation stone for a happy future. I'm especially pleased that this has enabled real and meaningful care and support for young people taking their first steps into adult life."
Councillor William Grant, Portfolio Holder for Children and Young People said: "The Promise really takes on board the views of care experienced children and young people, and has broken down the barriers to empower change.
"We want young people to grow well, live well, and age well, and by implementing the calls to action, we're changing how we think, support and give priority to children and their families."
You can read more about the Independent Care Review here.
To find out more about the South Ayrshire Champions Board, visit their Facebook page.