Governments and organizations around the world use data to do just that: to determine if they are meeting goals – themselves or through others – designed to assess whether they are Doing your job, and how well (or otherwise).
There is no question that this type of data can be useful, but it says little about what is behind the numbers – in the gaps and cracks where life takes place.
Of course, it is important to know how many people in Scotland were experienced in caring for drug-related deaths – but this will not begin to understand why, and prevent further deaths. Even with the resources needed to understand how many young people in detention are being cared for, it does not solve the military problem of why they are more easily criminalized than their peers. , Or it is eliminated.
The numbers, though valuable, do not tell us about the events that make up people’s lives – or what they need to thrive. Yet often these are just numbers that are used to track progress and tell a story of change.
Two years ago, Independent Care Review published its results. The seven reports, of which the main one is ‘Promise’, were driven and informed by people’s stories, experiences and results.
Storytelling is incredibly powerful. Telling the story of why and how you came to where you are can change opinions, change thinking, and – if really listened – change the future.
Thousands of children and families shared their experiences with the Independent Care Review in this very hope. Their stories, filled with so much pain and trauma, were carefully listened to, thought about, and Scotland was drawn together to paint a picture of that change.
Scotland listened – and promised change.
This year, the Promise Oversight Board, the body set up by Scotland to monitor progress towards fulfilling that promise, will publish its first report. It will tell you what he has seen and heard, as well as what he has not seen. It will be honest and clear how far Scotland has come, and how far it has to go.
The last 24 months since the publication of Promise have seen some of the most difficult times. The epidemic stopped the world on its way.
Life changed for everyone.
The government, public institutions, charities and businesses had to change the way they worked overnight.
But so far, many of the stories have remained the same with the growing epidemic of epidemics already plaguing the country.
Scotland knows what to do. Children and families shared intimate details of their lives to show what needs to change. They should never be told to do it again – more than once is enough.
Tomorrow is Care Day 2022, a day to celebrate the rights of children and young people who have experienced care. Of course, there is no better way to honor the caring community than by following their stories, the role they played in bringing about change.
It is now the responsibility of all those involved in the transformation to continue the work that is necessary to deliver on the promise, with speed.
Only this will enable Scottish children and families to write a new, happy, healthy and hopeful story for the future.
Fiona Duncan is chair of The Promise, the body responsible for ensuring the results of independent care reviews, and Corra’s CEO.