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The CHS Promise Programme

Why: Independent Care Review

Over the past few years, we’ve seen a massive movement for change, led by people with experience of the care and hearings systems in Scotland.

This culminated in the Independent Care Review which heard from more than 5,500 people: children, adults and families who have personal experience of care, as well as the unpaid and paid workforce.

The Independent Care Review published six papers, one of which was The Promise.

What: The Promise Scotland

The Promise Scotland was established to take forward the work of the Independent Care Review. In 2021, it published the Plan 21-24, outlining key outcomes that aim to ensure that Scotland’s children and young people grow up loved, safe and respected, so that they can realise their full potential.

Part of The Plan 21-24 focuses on a redesign of the children’s hearings system, underpinned by:

  • Giving effect to The Promise
  • Ensuring compliance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child;
  • Upholding the original intention of the Kilbrandon Review
  • Ensuring that the hearings system and the courts can facilitate child-friendly justice that upholds children’s rights and enables their effective participation.

How: the CHS Promise Programme

To ensure we can drive change, and evidence the impact on children and young people in children’s hearings, we have established the CHS Promise Programme.

This includes our participation in the Hearings System Working Group, established in 2021. We are working with The Promise Scotland, the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration and the Scottish Government to facilitate a redesign of the hearings system.

Our CHS Promise Programme also includes all of the improvement work we are undertaking, at both a local and national level, and ‘tests of change’ which are happening across the country, to improve the hearings experience for children, young people and families.

Of course we cannot do it alone. The CHS Promise Programme is underpinned by collaboration, engagement and consultation. We will be working with our partners, the CHS community (made up of volunteers and National Team staff members) and people with lived experience of children’s hearings and the wider care system.

We are committed to change. We are committed to #KeepThePromise to our children, young people and their families.