childhood memories

Care Experience & Childhood Memories

Our childhood memories shape who we are, how we see ourselves and the way that we relate to those around us. These memories are intricately shaped by our family. Parents reminisce with their children several times a day – reliving holidays, occasions, funny moments or behaviours. Consider your own memories – are they related to stories you have heard your mum tell countless times at family occasions? Do you have clear images from a moment in your childhood that is connected to the photographs you have up in your house? In research into how we form childhood memories, researchers themselves recount that they have misremembered events that happened to their sibling as their own because of the strong emotional connection.

Female care leavers and the construction of identity

Many women exiting the care system, despite the barriers they face, receive exemplary grades and obtain employment in highly competitive fields such as business, law, social care, politics and finance. However, statistically this isn’t as common as it should be. Statistically, the barriers facing these young women can have serious impacts on their lives, with the complexities of being a woman intersecting with the experience of leaving care. Emotional barriers such as building confidence in order to navigate male-dominated workforces and the pressures of conforming to gender roles which don’t necessarily reflect their identity often tend to go unspoken, underexplored and unsupported by governmental and other relevant authorities.

A brief history of the UK care system

This short article is an attempt to shed some light on the history of institutional care in Britain. I will draw attention to some of the most important Legal Acts and Figures and provide a rough timeline from the first traces of out-of-home care in 1552 (De Wilde, 2018) to the beginning of our present care system in the 20th century. This article is by no means exhaustive, and only scratches the surface of historical developments that lead us to where we are today. Hence I will signpost a few books and articles that go into more depth about the history of care.

The advantage of being real (not happy)

There is a common misconception of the terms “happiness” and “positivity” that I, as a practitioner of positive psychology often encounter. People tend to think of happiness as this desirable state in which everything is good, pleasant and peaceful. Most people think of it as a permanent state of being that we hope to achieve one day in future. We long for it and we work hard towards it, but we never seem to be able to really grasp it. In my experience, this longing for happiness has two major downsides.

LGBTQ+ History Month 2021

Fighting against social and systemic injustice underlines our mission at Drive Forward of enabling care-experienced young people to fulfill their full potential in sustainable and fulfilling employment. When we started our work 10 years ago, it has been clear early on that ‘care experience’ is a broad and dynamic field of multiple barriers, challenges, disadvantage, an array of emotions, different pathways, but also opportunities, achievements, and resilience. Care experience is just one part of an Indvidual’s identity; it’s an intersectional experience that spans across race, religion, gender, class, and sexuality. Care-experienced LGBTQ+ young people are particularly prone to facing stigma from family, friends and professionals, making it even harder to ‘come out’ in care.

Children’s mental health problems don’t disappear at 18, and nor should support.

Last week, organisations across the UK took part in Children’s Mental Health Week: an initiative that has been running since 2015. Sadly, we know that children in care are particularly at risk of poor mental health. Almost half of children in care have a diagnosable mental health disorder (compared to 10% of the general child population) and two-thirds have …

Children’s mental health problems don’t disappear at 18, and nor should support. Read More »

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