NRS Contact Centre provides life story work for children and young people to better support them in understanding and making sense of their past family history to prepare them for the future.
Some children and young people may have little understanding of why they don’t live with their birth parent(s), the reason for them being in this situation or the events that occurred in their early lives to cause this to happen. As this can have a negative impact on their self-esteem and emotional wellbeing, life story work aims to help children and young people to better understand and accept their personal history.
Life story work is used to link the past with the present for children and young people who have been separated from their family member(s) for some time. This process includes gathering facts and information about the history and events with the significant people identified in the child’s current and previous history being consulted. This gathering of information enables us to assist the child or young person to build a picture of their family history and better understand it. In turn, this helps the child or young person to better understand their history and begin to accept it enabling them to move forward with a greater understanding, security and assurances. A key part of life story work is also celebrating the child or young person’s achievements.
We have found that many children gain a great deal from speaking about their past and present history and their future aspirations with a sympathetic and impartial adult in a safe environment. A number of tools are used during sessions including arts and crafts and one to one time with our team to enable them to speak openly. Life story work provides a structure for children and young people to do this effectively and we have found that as an outcome, both children and adults can find this work to be greatly beneficial as it allows the children or young adults the time and space for them to piece together their past. It also provides them with a structured and understandable way of speaking about themselves, both good and bad and it can provide clarity where there are unsafe or idealised fantasies and increase understanding, acceptance, self-esteem, resilience and security.
Once the life story work has been completed, the child or young person will be provided with a life story book to take away with them. This will act as a visual reminder of the significant events and relationships in their life to which they can refer to at any time, particularly at times of uncertainly or doubt.
The end of the life story work is not the end of the child’s or young person’s life story as this will continue to evolve and develop as they mature and create their own history into adulthood.
Should you require further information then please do not hesitate to contact us