A new podcast series has been launched, tracking the roll-out of a new method for delivering life story work for care-experienced children and young people.
The Creative Life Story Work podcast is produced by Gateshead-based Blue Cabin, which is working with Professor Richard Rose (Therapeutic Life Story Work International) local authorities and professional artists in the North East to help young people better understand their own life stories, and improve their lives at home and school.
Jenny Young, Director of Blue Cabin, said: “Through the podcast we want to share what we’re learning about using creative activities to help care-experienced children and young people explore their own life stories, and investigate how this method could help improve outcomes for young people throughout the country.
“We’re working with staff from three local authorities, a team of professional artists, and world-leading expert in life story work, Professor Richard Rose, and all of these people will be sharing their experiences. We’ll also talk to care-experienced families, and care-experienced adults, to find out about the impact that effective life story work can have on people’s lives.”
Episode one of the podcast includes an introduction to the idea of Creative Life Story Work, which fuses creative activities facilitated by professional artists with therapeutic life story work.
Episode two focuses on the professional artists who work alongside local authorities to deliver activities that help children explore their pasts and look to their futures.
Nicola Golightly, one of Blue Cabin’s Associate Artists, who are running creative workshops with local authority staff and care-experienced families, said: “The sessions that we’ve run have linked to key themes about the young people and their life story – like emotions and feelings, who they are, who they live with and what their identity is.
“It’s about them relaxing and enjoying different activities – mark making, making maps or paper aeroplanes for example – and opening up the opportunity to have fun, be with the person that cares for them, and be with the professionals in the room so it’s a safe environment.”
Tony Joyce, Service Manager at South Tyneside Council, said: “Creative Life Story Work brings in the notion of play, and makes it more fun and enjoyable for children and young people. It can be done at their pace, it brings out their talents and interests, and raises their self-esteem and confidence.
“The key thing that’s come from young people is how much they’ve enjoyed it. Carers talked about how it was such a wonderful experience, and one of the comments that stood out for me was ‘I learnt so much about my lads.’ There is so much to be learnt from that and it’s helped change the culture in South Tyneside about how life story work is viewed.”
The Creative Life Story Work podcast is available on our website, and can be downloaded via Spotify, iTunes, and other podcast providers.