As the marketing manager for an independent fostering agency I work closely with our many offices across the country, often getting involved in producing various artwork or documents in which the content has come directly from our children and young people.
At the start of this week, whilst proof reading our Scotland Newsletter, I came across a few poems that a young person in care had shared with us. This 13-year-old girl, who is currently placed with one of our foster carers, is creating a book with compilations of over 50 prose (so far!), where she has combined pieces she has come across that she identifies with, as well as her own written pieces.
BEFORE YOU JUDGE ME BY MY LIFE, MY PAST OR MY CHARACTER
WALK IN MY SHOES, WALK THE PATH I HAVE TRAVELLED
LIVE MY SORROW, MY DOUBTS, MY FEAR AND MY PAIN.
IM TIRED OF FIGHTING, I WANT TO BE FOUGHT FOR
IM TIRED OF CARING, I WANT TO BE CARED FOR
IM TIRED OF BEING JUST ME, I WANT TO BE YOURS
YOU DON’T NEED MAKE UP TO BE PRETTY
YOU DON’T HAVE TO HAVE TONS OF FRIENDS TO BE POPULAR
YOU DON’T NEED A RELATIONSHIP TO BE HAPPY
ALL YOU NEED IS A KIND HEART, TRUE FRIENDS AND SELF CONFIDENCE.
S, 13 Years
I was really touched by her writing, and it made me think about the lonely existence children in care often lead, and how they really just want to be loved and cared for, something people like me who grew up in a loving caring family environment, and with a huge support network around, often take for granted.
With Valentine’s Day coming up this weekend, I thought about the fact that thousands, if not millions, of people around the country will be with their loved ones – spending time and money in an effort to show them that they are truly appreciated – although people often show this daily, albeit in smaller ways. It is this love and devotion that children in care often long for – someone who listens to them, understands and accepts them as they are, who makes them feel beautiful, wanted, loved and appreciated, who is there for them in their time of need, shows affection daily, making them feel at home, and safe and secure to be around.
Reading her poems, reminded me that there are still children out there that feel like this, so I wanted a way to show them that there are people out there who – although may not be part of their daily life – still thinks about them, appreciates them for who they are, for their courage and strength, and who genuinely want to help make things better for them in our own way somehow.
As a true marketeer, the best way I know how to salute them in this day and age is through social media, so I would like to put out a very special ‘Happy Valentines’ to all those children in need of love via #lovevalentinesday.