At the beginning of March Diagrama held a free online seminar for our staff, foster carers and adopters on building a culture of care, giving them a chance to learn about self-care, the importance of looking after yourself and others.
The last 12 months have been challenging in more ways than one. Our own wellbeing and the wellbeing of those we support is paramount if we are to deliver the first-class service the children and young people we work with deserve.
Diagrama’s Chief Executive David Romero McGuire kicked off the seminar with a warm welcome and then the guest speakers followed - Nancy Magon, Irene Levine and Ali Hollands.
Nancy Magon, co-founder of Aurora Family gave us an insight into emotional literacy, which is the term used to describe the ability to understand and express feelings. Working to break down barriers to success and healing particularly but not exclusively for vulnerable young people and families who have the sense that society has given up on them. Working constructively with people to change narratives and restore hope by providing a sense of belonging and family, Nancy has been supporting young people and their families for over a decade. She is an expert in fostering, risk management and young people in care.
Irene Levine, Operational Director at the Intercountry Adoption Centre discussed Black Lives Matter, racism and how this links to both our work and our lives, reflecting on what we do. Irene has decades of experience as a social worker and senior manager in children’s rights and corporate parent and family placement in both local authority and voluntary adoption agencies.
Ali Hollands is a stress, anxiety and overwhelm specialist who works with people who want tangible results to lead a stress-free life at home and in their business. Her clients include motivated professionals, competitive sportsmen and women, entrepreneurs and goal-oriented individuals in high-pressured environments.
The afternoon session was a reflective session with the opportunity to provide feedback for service development, with a choice of break out rooms with topics including: Opportunities for our children and young people to be heard, Looking at support for foster carers, Looking at support for adopters, Creating connectedness during lockdown, Learning and development for foster carers and adopters and finally Using supervision effectively.
Natalie Lohneis, Diagrama’s Head of Adoption & Fostering Services said “It was a fantastic day with a great level of participation, it went really well and we have received extremely positive feedback from participants. Self-care is great way to help maintain a healthy relationship with yourself so that you can transmit the good feelings to others. It can have the same effect in maintaining children’s mental and physical health as it does for an adult and it can teach children how to react and deal with their emotions. We look forward to reviewing all of the feedback and plan to run another conference next year."