Tending the Light which runs from 18-22 February reflects the brilliance of Stirling’s care experienced children and young people, promoting a culture where every child, young person and adult who has experience of care can be loved, safe, respected and able to shine brightly.
As part of the festival, the National Wallace Monument will be illuminated and art work created by young people, including a 3m tall window art installation, will be exhibited across Stirling venues.
Various partners such as University of Stirling, Forth Valley College and Skills Development Scotland will also be taking part along with national advocacy group Who Cares? Scotland.
Children and Young People Convener, Cllr Susan McGill said: “It’s an honour for Stirling to host the Tending the Light Festival of Care as a way to celebrate the achievements and potential of our young people. It’s also a timely reminder of our responsibility to support those who have experience of the care system in our communities in order to fulfil The Promise.
“Every child and young person has the right to feel safe and loved; it’s incumbent on us as a local authority to help provide an environment where we are able to allow our young people to thrive as they develop into adulthood.”
The festival begins on 18 February to coincide with International Care Day. This will be marked with a family fun day at Bannockburn House and will be concluded with a lantern parade to symbolise the tending of the light.An Opportunity to Focus MindsThe festival will also be an opportunity to promote opportunities to get involved such as volunteering with Stirling’s Mentoring Service, providing work experience opportunities, accessing funding for supported employment, apprenticeships or volunteering opportunities to help those who have experienced care into employment.
Vice Convener, Cllr Christine Simpson said: “The love and light from Stirling’s care experienced young people will radiate from the Tending the Light festival and I can’t express how proud I am of their achievements which will be celebrated.
“We are duty bound to uphold The Promise to the children and young people in our communities who have lived experience of the care system. Stirling hosting its first festival of care is an opportunity for us as a Council along with our residents to focus minds on how to achieve the best outcomes for these young people.”