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Children in or receiving support from care share the same hopes and dreams as their peers: they want to be supported to reach their aspirations in the same way as any other child.  

My young Ambassadors have been sharing their views on each of the themes from The Big Ambition, continuing with Children’s Social Care. Here, Tamar and Rebecca share their personal stories:    


“Aged six, I was torn away from my foster family, the only family I ever knew, and in the space of a few weeks was moved to a new area, in a new house and was attending a new school – I’d started all over. Sadly, I’m not the only care leaver who has had a bad experience in the system.  

Whatever the individual situation, the life of a child in care is not like any other. The truth is no matter how much love your new family gives you, you still feel different when a social worker takes you out of the classroom. You know you aren’t like other kids in class, but you can’t describe it.  

Children in care can face multiple moves, having to start over so many times – it’s no wonder some feel like giving up. How do we expect them not to keep doing worse in all aspects of their life when they have no anchoring or control of their own life, and their childhoods are decided by adults who neither resonate nor have time to understand their individual needs.  

Just because these children cannot live with their biological families, does not mean they should be forgotten, made to feel like a burden, or moved around, not consulted in life changing decisions, left to be excluded at higher rates and achieve less than their peers. Neither should their circumstances mean that their innocent light should be prematurely snuffed out, nor should any child’s – because children may be 20% of our population but are 100% of the future.”


“Many social workers work hard to make sure that children are put into a caring home, however there are many problems within the social care system.  

One problem is the insufficient number of foster carers, meaning some children are living in uncaring and problematic conditions, as there is no one available to give them good quality care. To combat this, children may go to group homes as it is the easiest option rather than finding suitable family replacements. Children in these settings do not get the individual time and caring attention they might receive in a family setting.  

Another issue is people becoming foster carers for the wrong reasons – some are financially motivated by the large allowances they receive, rather than wanting to help children.  

Aged five to seven, I was in the care system and my foster carer was motivated by money. She tried to bribe me to stay with her instead of moving to an adoptive family, by offering me a phone and nice toys. 

Because of this I want every child to be able to grow up in a loving and caring household, where they are protected and can enjoy their childhood. We need to get rid of the stigma that is still attached to growing up in care – it should be viewed as an alternative way of growing up, not an inferior one.”

Like all children, those living in care want a loving, stable home, a brilliant education and grown-ups who love them into adulthood.  

My role as Children’s Commissioner, and my great privilege, is to act as a champion for these children – all of whom deserve to have lives that are as fulfilling, rounded and happy as any other child. 

The Big Ambition results show that most children in care or those receiving support from children’s social care feel safe, loved and secure at home. However, this is sadly not the case for all children.  

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