So this year the focus for Place2Be is #BeingOurselves. What a brilliant notion and yet one that can, in reality, be difficult to achieve.
For so many children being themselves is a shameful, often punishable act. In their everyday lives it is not unusual to feel that they have to hide aspects of themselves; their character, their sexuality, thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
My partner is a Scout leader. He often hosts a music night whereby each Scout brings along a piece of music of their own choosing. What he loves about these evenings is the diversity in musical tastes, but what always surprises him is the embarrassment so many of the Scouts feel when sharing their music choices. Musical taste is so personal and can easily be seen as one of the many windows that give others a glimpse of who we really are. Such windows can make children feel vulnerable from attack, ridicule and judgement. It is not surprising then to find that for some it is easier to keep the blinds closed!
At Be the Jellyfish however we aim to support children to open those blinds. Our programme and resources enable children to Discover, Explore, Express, Manage and Develop themselves. All crucial steps towards accepting, celebrating and #BeingOurselves!
Please get in touch if we can help you support the children in your care.