Life Story Work
We can’t underestimate the importance of Life Story work for all children and young people who find themselves in the care system. When children are repeatedly separated from care givers and individuals with whom they have shared life experiences with, their histories can become fragmented and get lost.
As care givers we have a responsibility to these children to attempt to capture their journey and experiences through their formative years, so as adults they can make sense of and understand their history as well as knowing it was a positive experience for them.
As parents we tell our children stories about a particular photograph for example, where and when it was taken, who took it and why and in doing this, we keep memories ‘alive’ for children – that photograph then becomes meaningful and something tangible.
There are many creative ways we can capture this; collecting photographs, keeping records of funny anecdotes, school records, sporting achievements, holidays, hobbies, nick names, favorite foods, days out, Birthday celebrations – the list is almost endless.
We have created the Child’s Journey in order to try and capture some of those important personal details we hold for our children, in the hopes these can be built on each year. Once the young people leave our care – they will be given copies of their ‘journey’ to keep.
Can you imagine not having any memories of where you grew up and who with, having no photographs of yourself on a swing or on picnic in the park, not knowing who taught you to swim or ride a bike?
By completing the Child’s Journey alongside your child or young person – you’ll both find it can be a lot of fun and bring you closer together. So enjoy getting creative and you may learn something new about each other in the process!