A Support Worker’s view of the IJCC kick-off meeting
Hello, my name is Ingrid and I work at Glasgow Women’s Aid (GWA) as a children and young people’s support worker. I would like to share my thoughts and insights from the Improving Justice in Child Contact (IJCC) kick-off meeting which I attended with 3 fantastic young people who engage in our participation projects.
The meeting in February was a wonderful event enabling the young people to meet the delegates from the other countries involved in the project and to share their views, plans and ideas. Supporting and facilitating young people to attend events is a very rewarding aspect of my job at GWA and we appreciated the opportunity to share the knowledge we have gained in engaging children and young people in participation work.
It was amazing to receive such positive feedback from these partners and to share our experiences in the hope it will assist them going forward. It also provided validation to the young people that their commitment to the project is appreciated and that their experiences, views, opinions and voices can make a difference. Furthermore, the young people are gaining skills such as delivering and writing presentations, public speaking and working positively within a team, which will enhance their future study and career prospects.
We have found that having an already established relationship with the young people allows us to provide support and reassurance to them prior to events. Roseanna and Sue at Scottish Women’s Aid provided event information and opportunities for lots of practice and rehearsal in advance of the event which ensured the young people felt confident and prepared on the day. Having some fun activities planned after the event allowed the young people to relax and have some well-deserved fun.
It is an absolute privilege to be part of these events and see the impact it has on the young people – their confidence, self-assurance, poise and professionalism has grown immensely. Their strength and continued commitment inspire me to continue to support their involvement. Finally, I would like to thank everyone for the very warm welcome we received at the event.