“Being called a problem child made me feel like… it was really, really difficult. It kind of shut me down. It made me quiet. I didn't want to talk about anything anymore. I was afraid about what was going to happen next. And, yeah, that was not good. That was crap.
Young people who are in care, who are already vulnerable, who have probably already been labelled at school, at home, are then being called something by someone who has power, who is making decisions for you.
As a social worker, it's really, really important that we are aware of what we're calling our families, what we're saying in front of them. It's so important because that can make or break a young person. It could make or break a family.”
If you’ve been separated from your siblings and want to see them - Talk to your caregiver or social worker about it and tell them what you want. Or call 0508 FAMILY (0508 326 459) to talk to Oranga Tamariki.
If you need someone to talk to - 0800 What's Up (0800 942 8787) is a free counselling service. It’s a safe place for you to talk about anything at all, so if you need support or someone to talk to, give them a call as they’d love to chat. You can call free Monday to Friday 1pm to 10pm, and Saturday and Sunday 3pm to 10pm.
If you’re keen to go to university or find out more about further education - Have a look at Careers New Zealand for loads of awesome information about courses, locations, degrees, applications and entry requirements, scholarships, dates and heaps more.
If you're worried about your family - You can call Oranga Tamariki on 0508 FAMILY (326 459) and talk to a trained social worker. They will listen to you, and then work out what kind of help your family might need.