Inspired by groups and organisations sharing the message of The Promise, we reached out to our support staff across our Fostering Service and asked them to think about some of the most memorable positive outcomes that they have seen for children and young people which illustrates the underpinning values and aspirations of The Promise.
Heather, a Supervising Social Worker with Care Visions Fostering Scotland, shared the story of June whom she works with:
June became the foster carer for a young brother and sister on what was originally a short break emergency placement with a plan for the children to then move on to stay in separate living environments; As of February 2022, we are now 8 months down the line and previous plans to separate the children have been re thought. The children are doing brilliantly! So much of this has been down to the hard work done by their foster carer June and, in particular, using her skills in Theraplay® based approaches.
A therapeutic approach based on the Theraplay® model has supported this brother and sister relationship to change- from being what once could be described as “destructive and hurtful” to each other because of past trauma, to now being loving and beneficial for both children’s progress.
June's approach was to create a calm, nurturing environment with clear boundaries. Once the children became more relaxed, they were able to start to make steps then strides in their relationship. We know that when children are in times of stress this can often be focused on their brothers or sisters as that has been their safest relationship. June worked alongside a Therapeutic Family Worker – Liz, on strategies to support a healthy relationship to grow.
After some initial hard work and lots of love, the relationship between them is much healthier and positive. The Local Authority Social Work Service have been greatly impressed at the difference and all are relieved that the children can remain together. To change the direction of the plan for each of the children is a testament to the commitment of all to make a difference.
For the children this means that the longest relationship in their lifetimes has been preserved and the children will go on to share this bond in the future. Heather voices this as heart-warming for everyone to see and feels that The Promise was prioritised and kept for these children in this powerful example.