Our Hearings, Our Voice (OHOV) was delighted to attend the launch of an ‘Understanding my Hearing’ initiative in Stornoway yesterday. 

The Keeping The Promise pilot includes children age 6 and over, receiving a Pre-Hearing visit invite and a scrapbook before their Hearing and after their Hearing, a personalised letter from the Reporter and an offer of a post Hearing meeting. 

The aim of the scheme is to provide enhanced support to children and young people to help them better prepare for their Hearings. 

It is hoped the initiative will also enable children and young people to participate more effectively in their Hearing, understand what happens during their Hearing and what the Hearing decisions mean for them. 

The Western Isles initiative builds on a similar pilot launched in Fife in November 2023. 

The concept and design of the scrapbook came from Board Members from OHOV and it was developed over the summer and autumn of last year.

The scrapbook – which is an A5 booklet – includes pages for children and young people to write down how they are feeling, to customise their Hearing beforehand and to record Hearing decisions afterwards. It also contains information about their rights in the Children’s Hearings System and where to find help and more information. 

Speaking straight after the launch event at the Hearings centre in Stornoway, OHOV Board Member Lisa Mason said: “It was really important to have all the key organisations together today to help fill in the missing pieces for children and young people coming to Hearings.” 

Senior Practitioner Erica Murray from SCRA said: “I would like to thank all our partners who joined us at the launch. We had a fantastic response with social work, advocacy, education and the panel community all in attendance. There was a tremendous amount of interest in the scrapbook and the wider project.

“We look forward to working with all our partners to better prepare children and young people before and after their Hearing and help Keep The Promise.”

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