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Care Experienced Week is a national celebration of Care Experienced people, taking place every year in October. To join in the celebrations, we'd love to shine a light on some members of the Care Experienced & Estranged Society and what they've been up to and how you can join in the celebration!
‘Care experienced’ is an umbrella term which means anyone who has experienced being looked after by someone outside of your family. This could mean lots of different ways, such as:
Last year, John Lewis' Christmas ad highlighted Care Experienced people in a fantastic way. Since then, they have worked closely with the care experienced community in several ways.
This month, they launched Made to Care, a brand for designs & products made by care experienced creators. The first design is a tote bag designed by Michael, a Strathclyde student and member of the society!
Michael worked with the John Lewis in-house design team and creative partners Saatchi & Saatchi to create the unique design. He said about the piece, ‘The stars on the bag represent the brilliance of Care Experienced people, and the surrounding clouds depict the love, care and respect these individuals need.’
You can find out more about Michael's work and the Made to Care label here.
Moniack Mhor is a residential retreat for the creative arts in Invernesshire. Megan took part in a 5 day workshop called Sound and Vision, although everyone was encouraged to express themselves however they wished, with people writing short stories, poems, and song lyrics.
They said about the experience, ‘We were joined by 3 tutors who all helped in different areas, mainly photography, filming, and music, and provided some amazing equipment and shown how to use it. I learned new skills in music mixing/production, filming with drones and handheld cameras, photography, and had an amazing time doing so.’
‘The people working at Moniack Mhor were so caring as well, the cooks made amazing food, and the staff were constantly checking up on us. There wasn't a moment I was cold, hungry, or uncomfortable! There was always plenty snacks and a wood burner on keeping us cosy, when I mentioned I liked a certain drink the staff bought some for me the same day. I'd recommend the care experienced residential to anyone eligible, it was an amazing week I won't forget!’
You can find out more about Moniack Mhor here.
There are events happening across the UK, with the London Eye and other landmarks and councils even lighting up on Friday 27th October to mark the week!
In Glasgow, you can join the Who Cares? Love Rally on Sunday 29th October from 1 – 3pm, a celebration march for care experienced people, friends, family and allies. We'll be marching from the Doulton Fountain in Glasgow Green to George Square, where speakers and musicians will be performing.
Who Cares? Love Rally details
Can't make the march? Here are some other ways you can join:
The society is run exclusively by Care Experienced and Estranged students, for Care Experienced and Estranged students.
We aim to create an inclusive environment where students can socialise and access support, welcoming Care Experienced and Estranged students regardless of background, mental or physical disability (including hidden disabilities), race, religion, sexuality, gender, or gender identity.
Strath Union is dedicated to ensuring all students have a fantastic student experience, as part of our responsibilities as corporate parents. We want to ensure all care experienced students are well supported during their time at Strathclyde.
If you would like to get in touch with any suggestions on events or opportunities you'd like to see, we would love to hear from you!
Care Experienced & Estranged Society
A Guide For Allies by Isabelle Kirkham
Care Leavers are not weak by Matt Taylor