A group of care experienced young people came together in York to embrace “the one percent” project and begin a creative journey that will lead to a film driven and shaped by real experiences.
The young people all from York will go on to star in a powerful new film as part of Yorks first ever Mediale festival. The One Percent aims to create an opportunity for real voices to be heard and explore the care experience and specifically thoughts, feelings and ideas associated with the transition from care to independence.
The first session was inspirational and the young people were very articulate in sharing their ideas and views. We started by exploring the care experience and asked the group to tell us what their message to the world was. This is what they said…
“The media often portrays children in care and care leavers as weaker or under achievers. I believe the care family are some of the wisest people you’ll ever meet. To have battled through life at its darkest hours and to have continued to fight. We’re here to make a movement. So help us to be the movement.”
“We are entitled to have an upbringing that is as “normal’ or considered to be normal as possible and to not be judged for being brought up in care as it isn’t your choice.”
“Having a care experience doesn’t make you a bad person or someone who will make poor decisions. It makes you stronger and a more determined person.”
“Every child in the care system has their own story, no story is ever the same. The struggles are constant from stereotypes to the lasting effects of trauma causing most young people to suffer from mental health.”
“The fact social workers and foster carers are constantly changing means young people struggle to maintain relationships. We are people not objects. We are all individuals. Don’t treat us like criminals.”
“The struggles of mental health and the lasting effects of trauma. Social workers or carers constantly changing. Feeling punished for your parents mistakes”
Next the team explored what was good about care and what could be improved.
The good things about care are meeting new people who have been in the same situation as you and also what you have to offer and can contribute in groups.
Stereotypes, stigma, losing family, friends and your childhood home.
What could be better?
- Consistency of family contacts and social workers
- The way we are portrayed as ‘troubled’ or how we are labelled to be ‘bad’ or ‘hard work’.
- Not all children and young people in care are the same and aren’t all trouble causers
- We want extra love and support that we haven’t yet been given
- We want to break the stereotypes so why don’t you help us?
The depth and authenticity of the discussion was remarkable and highlighted how passionate and inspired these young people were to make a difference in the world by highlighting what works and what can be bettered to improve the lives of other young people and was so inspiring to witness. Kritikal recorded the audio of the young people from the session which may be used as part of the production!
Over the coming weeks the crew will develop a character using their shared experiences to create spoken word poetry with Hip Hop and Grime Artist Kritikal Powers before scripting and producing a film in coproduction with Inspired Youth.
Keep watching the blog to see the story unfold…