The importance of love within the care system : love should be a right

Johnston, Helen (2018) The importance of love within the care system : love should be a right. Scottish Journal of Residential Child Care, 17 (3). ISSN 1478-1840

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I wrote this piece in the hopes to open a conversation about the impact of love within the care system. As a care experienced person, it often baffles me that we still cannot openly speak about love within the care system. It is the one thing that all children need to thrive yet when they are placed within care, the system is not required to love them, it is not a right and therefore many go without feeling loved when they are in the system. In this piece I have written about my experience of growing up for half my life within the care system and the isolating effect it had on me when I never felt loved, nor was given the chance to feel and understand what real, unconditional love was. I have also highlighted the impact love had on me when aged 17 I felt loved by an adult for the first time in my life in the hopes to highlight the importance love has on ensuring Scotland’s care experienced young people are given the best chance at life.

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