Sunday’s Love Rally organised by Who Cares? Scotland signaled the beginning of Care Experienced Week 2022. Hundreds of Scotland’s care community came together to march through Glasgow for a lifetime of equality, respect and love.
Despite the drizzle, it was a beautiful day. Huge thanks to Who Cares? Scotland for bringing us together to connect with old friends and make new ones - and to listen to brilliant, inspiring speakers.
Sunday was far from the first time that care experienced campaigners have come together to draw attention to the structural and systemic inequalities their community is confronted by. Without this sustained effort, Scotland would not have had an Independent Care Review , there most likely would never have been such far-reaching, progressive changes in legislation - and there definitely would not be the nation-wide commitment across Scotland to #KeepThePromise.
During this Care Experienced Week, The Promise Scotland will highlight some of the activity being progressed to #KeepThePromise. It would be wonderful if the organisations making changes would use this week to share what they are doing.
It is important to recognise and value all the changes being made and appreciate the many people working on Scotland’s collective endeavour. I know so many care experienced adults who campaigned for change, took part in the review, and today are working for change they demanded. That work can be hard, and draining but it is also an amazing testament to the immense love and determination at the heart of the care experienced community.
But I do want you to know that whilst we are celebrating how far Scotland has come, we must also reflect on how far there is still to go. And acknowledge that still, every day, in Scotland, the promise is not being kept to far too many care experienced children and adults, and their families.
The Promise Oversight Board , set up to oversee and monitor change, published its first report at the beginning of summer. Over half of the 21 members are care experienced. In their report, they made clear that whilst there was change happening, it wasn’t going far or fast enough - and crucially was not being felt by the people to whom the promise was made - care experienced children, young people, adults and families.
The Promise Scotland, which supports the Promise Oversight Board, has developed its website. On it, you can find:
- a copy of the Promise Oversight Board Report,
- an easy read version, and
- an infographic outlining what the report says.
This Care Experienced Week, the Promise Oversight Board sends its love to the care community alongside its commitment to continue to champion the conclusions of Independent Care Review and hold Scotland to account. We take our job to oversee and monitor progress really seriously. And in doing that, we will always have love for the care community in our hearts.
I hope you are all having a good week.