TACT Connect – a new initiative by TACT to celebrate and support care experienced people throughout their adult lives, has been launched with a special art exhibition showcasing pieces created by Connect members.
19 year old Channan was among members of the Connect community on hand at the launch event to talk to visitors about their art work, which all shared theme of ‘message to my younger self’.
Her particular creative effort features a photo of Janette who fostered her through TACT from the age of one, and then adopted her when she was 8. Among the many personal messages in the artwork is Janette’s wise advice to Channan – its ok not to be ok. The fact that she is HIV positive is also depicted, and there is an image of her taken during a school visit to talk to pupils about the disease.
Channan said: “It is great to be given the opportunity to connect with other young people who have been in care and have similar life stories. Creating my art piece made me think a lot about my own story, I found it therapeutic.”
TACT Connect aims to create a dynamic network of TACT care leavers, who will be able to meet each other through special events, learn and access new skills, and gain support in reaching personal aspirations.
Mark Riddell – National Advisor for Care Leavers was among the guests at the launch event.
Mark said: ”Initiatives like TACT Connect are important because they are led by the voices of care experienced young people. This is a new concept and it would be good to see similar work happening elsewhere in the country. We need to be ambitious about how we support care experienced people, and TACT Connect is a really good starting point.”
The exhibition will take place at Centrala, in Birmingham, from Tuesday 9th until Friday 12th April 2019, 11am – 6pm.