What is Life Story work?
Life Story work is gathering information about the life of a child in care and putting it together in a story to provide an anchor to the past, a picture of the present and a bridge to the future. Life Story work is a major role of the care team. It helps children explore what has happened to them in a safe way.
The real value of life story work lies in the process of the child gaining a sense of self-esteem and self-worth by honouring their past and celebrating their life and experiences.
What you can do to help?
Your care team will talk to you about keeping records of a child’s life and memories while in your care, including records of significant events such as illnesses, accidents, awards, achievements, sports, art, school and work participation and results, as well as day to day events.
Remember the record is for the child, think about what they would like to read about in later life, what you have kept for your own children and the memories you have of your childhood.
Each Life Story is unique and individual just like the Child
Every child is a unique individual and will have their own ideas about the sort of life story they would like. Be flexible and open to their ideas which will change as they grow up. Remember Life Story Work belongs to the child and while it is a personal record it is also a formal requirement that the child’s records be maintained and updated. It’s also important that Life Story work stays with the child if they leave your care.
Always make sure Life Story works and any records, photos, certificates awards etc go with a child when they leave your care.
You can find more information about Life Story work on these websites.