As part of our Foster Care FortnightTM 2019 campaign, we held a reception at the Scottish Parliament with children from our Walking Tall project, alongside their foster carers and social workers. We were delighted to be joined by the children’s minister, Maree Todd and the children’s commissioner, Bruce Adamson. We received an apology from the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, however, a few days later we were delighted to receive an invitation to her official residence, Bute House.
Last Thursday evening our director in Scotland, Sara Lurie, and operations manager, Sarah McEnhill, joined the eight children from the Walking Tall steering group and their foster carers, and spent the evening with Nicola Sturgeon.
As part of the Walking Tall project the children were all given plain white t-shirts onto which the other members of the group were encouraged to sign positive messages. The children wore their signed t-shirt’s to Bute House and were delighted when the First Minister also added her own personal messages to them. The First Minister was then handed her own t-shirt which the children were keen to gather around and write on.
The children shared the Walking Tall activities with the First Minister, speaking about their hand puppets, the foster homes they had designed and their self-esteem shields.
The children also took part in a role play where they were given different government positions - education minister, justice minister, finance minister, etc to give them an insight into the role of government in fostering. Before leaving the children presented the First Minister with a framed poster from the Walking Tall project.
Sara Lurie said: 'It was an amazing evening. I particularly enjoyed the role play - suffice to say, the children closed all schools and put all the adults in jail!'
After the event the First Minister tweeted: 'It was great to welcome the #WalkingTall group to Bute House last night to talk about what matters to young people in foster care. Thanks to all for a fun night.'