This was written by one of our female young people several months ago, not for the purpose of this website but for a piece of on-going 'It's My Life' work. It appears here because we couldn't find better words to express what we're all about (and of course) with her and social worker's permission.
I've been in care for eleven years. I've moved around a lot and lived with total strangers, it's just what happens in situations like mine, you get moved, you just start to settle down when they move you again, you get used to it after a while but no one should be used to it, it's the most horrible feeling I've ever felt. I've always hoped to settle in one place and feel as though someone actually cared about me and wanted to help me in some sort of way, I didn't care how, I just wanted to be heard.
I got taken into care when I was four years old, I hated every minute of it. As I got older I realised it was for the best, I wasn't around abusive people and I was being looked after like a child should be. I was always hopeful that one day I would go back to my family but in a way I'm glad it didn't happen because I wouldn't be the person I am today if I wasn't taken into care when I was. I've been to a lot of places and after eleven years I've finally found the right place. I've been to foster placements and residential placements, some people find that foster placements try to be more of a family, personally I don't like that and prefer residential placements. Where I live now (with Genus Care) is more a family to me than my actual family, they're all loving, caring and honest with me. I honestly wouldn't change anything about living here. They have changed me so much for the best, before I moved here I wasn't going to school, I was staying out all night, not coming home etc., in the first 12 months of living here I've had 100% attendance at school and haven't been staying out. I'm so much happier and relaxed.
I was one of the first people to move into this home and have been here nearly a year, I know this placement is for me until I move out independently. The other two boys that live here are like my brothers, most of the time, we have plenty of arguments but that's what families do, isn't it? This place is by far the best placement anyone will ever come across, no matter what happens they will never give up on you, no matter how much you test them, say you hate them, say or do things to hurt them, they will always be by your side and help you with whatever is going on, they always take time to talk to you even when they're not in work they will still make the time for you. This is the one thing I've never had, I've had very little support in my life and I'm glad to be in a place where someone is listening to my opinions. You never know what's going to happen next but I've now got a lot of stability from people who actually care so I'm confident things will be ok!