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The foundations of the promise are built on what care experienced people said needs to change in Scotland.

The Independent Care Review identified five key things that underpin the promise. Together, they give Scotland a clear starting point when thinking about what matters.

They show what's important for any child to grow up loved, safe and respected.

They’re based on the human rights which we all share

All children should be able to grow up in a loving family environment.

It's fundamental to the human rights of all Scotland's children and young people. That's something made clear in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

To help make sure this happens for care experienced children, the Convention says there should be extra protections for them. But Scotland should take steps to make sure all children can grow up in this way.

Every child deserves to grow up loved, safe and respected— and children should be able to stay with their families when they can.

But sometimes, families need support to make sure this can happen. And when a child can’t stay with their family, they should still get the care that they need.


The five things the promise is built on

Family, voice, care, people, scaffolding

About the five foundations


Children must be listened to.

That means they should be meaningfully and appropriately involved when decisions are made about their care.

And it means everyone involved in their care should listen properly to them, and respond to what they want and need.

Scotland's culture of decision-making must be compassionate and caring. It must be focused on children, and those they trust.

The yellow heart which stands for the foundation of voice.


Where children are safe in their families and feel loved, they must stay.

Families must get support together to nurture that love, and to overcome the difficulties which get in its way.

The blue circle which stands for the foundation of family.


Sometimes, it's not possible for children to live with their family.

But they must still be able to live with their brothers and sisters, as long as it's safe.

And they must belong to a loving home, staying there for as long as they need to.

The teal circle which stands for the foundation of care.


The children Scotland cares for must be supported to develop relationships: with people in the workforce, and those in the wider community.

And these people must also be supported: to listen, and to be compassionate in their care and decision-making.

The pink diamond which stands for the foundation of people.


Children, families and the workforce must be supported by a system that is there when it is needed: the scaffolding of help, support and accountability.

The heart that surrounds the promise's logo, which stands for the foundation of scaffolding.