This Manifesto was developed by six Scottish organisations with expertise in looked after children and young people:
- Aberlour Child Care Trust,
- British Association of Adoption and Fostering,
- Fostering Network,
- Scottish institute for Residential Child Care,
- Scottish Throughcare and
- Aftercare Forum, Who Cares? Scotland.
We think that the consortium have done a really good piece of work. In order to give political impetus to the Manifesto, they are now asking organisations and individuals (not just in Scotland) to sign up online and add their names to the growing list of supporters of No Time to Lose.
What’s this all about?
Children and young people looked after away from home are amongst the most marginalised in Scotland today. There are over one million children and young people in Scotland but only 5,000 plus children and young people looked after away from home in residential or foster care. However, in spite of this small number, services are stretched to the limit and not all children who are looked after are getting the services they need.
The manifesto, No Time to Lose, highlights the challenges that confront service providers and that children and their families experience. It recommends action that can be taken to make a difference to children’s lives. It is a call for change which has an unprecedented breadth of consensus across the sector working with and for these children and young people.
No Time to Lose was launched last year, and changes are evident already.
The Scottish Executive’s Can and Must Do Better report outlines key actions to improve the education of children and young people who are looked after. The report has taken account of several recommendations put forward in No Time to Lose. People are listening to theconcernsthat No Time to Lose raises.
Seventy nine organisations and individuals signed up in support of No Time to Lose prior to its launch. Now, individuals are being invited to add their names to the manifesto on SIRCC’s website: http://www.sircc.strath.ac.uk/manifesto/index.html
What are the key messages?
Children who live away from home have a right to an everyday childhood, just like other children, with the opportunity to fulfil their potential. The manifesto urges everyone to redouble their efforts to make sure that children who have often suffered abuse and neglect are not stigmatised or receive poor services. There is an urgent need to deal with the challenges of providing high quality services.
No Time to Lose covers a wide range of areas: providing the best services, young people moving on from care, supporting families, a skilled and qualified workforce, health, education, youth justice and secure care, disabled children and young people who arrive in Scotland unaccompanied.
The manifesto is based on principles which place children and young people at the heart of communities and at the centre of services, calls for an end to the mismatch between policies and what children experience, makes a plea for using solutions that work and urges Scotland to provide world class services for children. It emphasises the importance of ensuring that children’s and young people’s voices are heard and that their rights are upheld by service providers.
Please forward this email to others locally, nationally or internationally who might also support these recommendations for change.