'We need to do better together for the most vulnerable in our society: children'
As a participant of the Family Business consultation, the main thought I will take away is 'how can I influence and make a difference in both my formal and informal societal roles?'
Some of the key areas and questions for me were around:
- what 'participation' really means to a child or young person
- the journey of parenting
- the journey of child development
- transition phases for children and young people
- building trust and friendship in the family
- the seeking of solutions and helpful interventions
- use of significant others, including grandparents
- the difference between 'listening to' and 'hearing' the child's voice
I've also been thinking about what role the state, the voluntary sector, and education have to play in reducing child poverty, and whether targeted funding is better, or universality of benefits?
Overall, my experience of the consultation was a roller coaster of thoughts, reflective analysis and the overwhelming feeling that we need to do better together for the most vulnerable in our society; children.
The 'age of austerity' has not yet challenged us profoundly, but it will, and it is incumbent on us, as key strategic, professional thought-leaders to maximise resource and expertise to the full advantage of the child. Our future is in their small hands.
Maxine Room is the Principal and Chief Executive of Lewisham College.
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Subjects: Good Childhood Conversations