Our 2020 Strategy
How we will make a difference to families, looked after and formerly looked after children this year and beyond.
With some leftover Christmas pudding and armed with a cuppa we sat down to plan our work for 2020. There is much to do. So what are we waiting for?
"Through the arts we want to empower families and young people affected by fostering and adoption to own their story. We want to enrich lives, improve life chances and support young people and families to thrive"
Here's what we have planned...
Our therapeutic work
It's all about getting funding and raising money to really get cracking with the charitie's main focus which is our therapeutic work. We would like to support families to grow connection and attachment by creating with them a one of a kind children’s book which will tell their unique story of how they came together as a family. We're calling the project Our Story.
Our Story will improve the mental and emotional wellbeing of former looked after children who will have experienced grief, loss, neglect or abuse. There is little post-adoption support, which means even after a child has been placed in their forever home, families are left to heal complex trauma with little to no guidance or professional support. Our Story gives parents the language and opportunity to work through feelings with their children. And Our Story supports children to explore their sense of self and identity in a way that is accessible to them through illustration and art therapy.
Involving the community
So that we can make sure the voices of young people and families are heard we think it's really important to involve the community. We want to use the lived experience of people who experience similar barriers and issues to develop something that really meet their needs.
The work itself will be made with the families directly. The books will quite literally tell their story. Families will talk with an artist and therapist about their journey so far, asking questions about how they came together, motivations to adopt and their feelings about their family. We will explore their local authority life story work, resources, objects, photos, home videos and more to be as true to their experiences as possible.
We are so happy to be linked with a number of adoption services in Yorkshire and the East Midlands so that we can understand in depth the needs of the community we wish to work with including parents and adoptees. We will continue to work with them as partners to deliver the project.
Funding our work
We successfully raised over a thousand pounds from our Kickstarter campaign to fund Collect The Diamonds, a children's book about forever families. Sales of this book will raise awareness, promote positivity and build stronger more resilient families. We have submitted bids to Arts Council England and The National Lottery Community Fund over Christmas (we stop for nothing!) and we hope to hear back from these early this year.
If you would like to get involved and support us please come and talk to us, we love to hear from other people who are just as passionate about improving the lives of forever families as we are.
Sian and Siobhan x