Why do you think it’s important to celebrate the untold stories of care-experienced people?
I think it’s an important way to show that we are not alone.
When stories are being shared by care-experienced people of the journeys they have conquered, I believe it’s a way to inspire others that they can get through it too.
It can also be comforting to know that there are people who have been in the care system like myself who can go through similar situations and take different paths, but they can overcome whatever they want to, no matter their life experiences.
Below is a quote I would like to share with those that could do with a reminder when coming across this blog:
“Just because you took longer than others, doesn’t mean you failed. Keep going.”
What does a month all about celebrating care-experienced voices mean to you?
Events like Care Experienced History Month means to me that it’s a month where we can be under the spotlight which will show that we are cared about.
So often, when you leave care, that’s it. You are left completely on your own, and it can make you feel like you don’t matter. That is not how it should be.
When the voices of people who have been in care are listened to, it makes us feel seen and heard. It’s also something to look forward to, celebrate, and be proud of.
What more do you think needs to change about the representation of care-experienced young people in the media?
Too often, care-experienced characters on TV have been represented as problematic and that can mean a lot of people associate those in care with what they have seen on TV. I don’t think I’ve seen many programmes whereby a positive outlook has been shown on those who have been through the care system.
Even though the majority of the people who have been in care have not had a good experience, what’s important is the capability of care-experienced people to turn their life around regardless of the experiences they may have had.
If we celebrate those remarkable stories followed by the positive outcomes it may help change attitudes towards care experienced people.
Who comes to mind when you think of a care-experienced person in the media whose story you find inspiring?
Ashley John-Baptise and Penny Jarrett! Ashley is a BBC reporter and presenter/speaker. Ashley’s documentary ‘Split up in care: life without siblings’ was so significant and he speaks out so much about issues in the care system.
Penny is a mental health and wellness coach. I came across Penny when I was involved with the ‘Be Inspired’ project. Since then I’ve followed her journey through social media. With what I’ve seen so far, I really appreciate how it has made me learn more about myself and my own mental health.
What more can be done, beyond Care Experienced History Month, to help care-experienced young people feel a sense of community?
I attend Become’s Link-Up. I believe spaces like that are really helpful in building a sense of community.
It takes place on zoom every week but even if you attend once a month, it’s nice that people can meet up, be involved in activities, and support each other. It’s a good way to socialise and find people you can relate to.
Jasmine, Care Leaver