How we talk about care experience matters. Our early research tells us that most people think about care experience in the same way. And tell the same story. A story about a broken system. Of neglectful parents who make bad choices. Of damaged, difficult kids – who become damaged, difficult adults.

We’ve identified a steady diet of these stereotypes in our media: from the programmes we watch, to the materials we read, and the news we listen to.

Over time, these stories shape our attitudes, behaviour – and even policy preferences – in ways we may not even realise.

Caricatures of badly-behaved children and morally deficient adults point the finger at individuals who just need to ‘do better.’ Rather than at a care system that can and should be better for Scotland’s children.

It’s time for a new story.

One that can contest and redirect public thinking. One that can end the stigma towards people with care experience. And one that can build public support for the groundbreaking work of the Promise.

At FrameWorks UK, we use social science to explore public thinking. And find the narratives that change hearts and minds. We’ve been working alongside people with care experience, and those who support children, young people and families, to design, shape and test and a new story about care experience. One that redirects public thinking away from stereotypes about ‘forever damaged others.’ And towards what each and every child in Scotland needs to thrive.

Explore the toolkit and the practical steps you can take to support this new story on the Each and Every Child website.

Tamsyn Hyatt is Principle Communications Strategist at FrameWorks UK. FrameWorks UK works with mission-driven organisations to create social change through framing research and support in using that research.