We must be bold if we truly want to #BuildBackBetter

We find ourselves in the most challenging of times. The collective response to the COVID-19 pandemic has called on us all to adapt how we live our individual lives – but it too, has ushered in changes to the services we provide at Includem. Our team continues to work tirelessly to develop new, creative ways to engage with and support young people throughout ‘lockdown’ and we still provide vital financial and material support to families through our Young Person’s Fund.

Blog: Should the age of referral to the Children's Reporter be raised?

We can answer this question with an emphatic YES.


Why? First and foremost because we recognise Article 1 of the UNCRC which defines a child as anyone under the age of 18 and therefore they should be offered the full protection of their rights.

The fundamental principles of our unique Children’s Hearing System are that the welfare of the child is paramount and for the measures to be effective, the child must be viewed in the context of their family, regardless of the cause for concern which brought them before a Hearing. As far back as 1964, Lord Kilbrandon recognised that punishing young people for their behaviour which resulted from failures in their own care and upbringing, was not the right response. More than fifty years later, these principles remain unaltered and for that reason we support the raising of the age of referral.

Includem appointed National Childhood Bereavement Coordinator by Scottish Government

Includem, Scotland’s youth and family support charity, has been appointed by the Scottish Government as the National Childhood Bereavement Coordinator with Denisha Killoh, former stigma co-chair of the Independent Care Review set to coordinate the project.

Includem - Scottish Government National Childhood Bereavement Coordinator

Includem research reveals COVID-19 hitting Scotland’s poorest families hardest

Includem has today released a report on poverty and the impact coronavirus is having on young people and families we support.

We asked families what their experiences of meeting day-to-day costs has been like over the past 12 months and what impact COVID-19 has had on them.

Our Chief Executive, Martin Dorchester, said: “We support some of the poorest and most marginalised young people and families in Scotland. We knew that coronavirus was going to hit them the hardest, and this research has sadly confirmed this.”

Cassie’s story: “Nobody clicked on to it. Nobody offered me help.”

Cassie was just 12 when she experienced a traumatic bereavement. Within a few years she was drinking heavily and regularly coming into conflict with the law, yet the support she so badly needed was not made available to her.

Cassie’s story is not uncommon. In fact, numerous studies have shown the link between young people experiencing a bereavement and going on to offend.

Here she tells her story.