Category Archives: Children

‘It was heartbreaking’: the bleak truth behind Bafta-chasing migrant drama

Stark realities underpin Aamir, Vika Evdokimenko’s ostensibly fictional tale of a young migrant forced to fend for himself

Aamir is just 13. Like many teenagers, his coming of age is marked by a wispy moustache above his upper lip, a vulnerability in his hunched shoulders, a voice not yet broken.

But after soldiers break into his family home in Mosul and shoot and kill his father, Aamir must become a man. His mother sends him away with a few wads of cash and his father’s watch as insurance, hoping to give him a better life – one he might actually survive. But as the boy tries to find his feet all alone in a foreign world, will he end up losing his mind in the process?

Continue reading…
Source: gad

Helping child witnesses: 'One girl gave evidence with a hamster on her lap'

They might be victims of rape, or witnesses to murder. But can they really be relied upon to tell the truth at trial?

In the playroom, perched high above suburban rooftops, it feels as if you’re sailing in a sturdy little boat. Outside, beyond the fields, the sea is a strip of hazy grey-blue that glows silver where it meets the sky. Here on the floor is the scattered residue of a child at play: plastic tractors and fire engines spilling from a big red box, half-done puzzles, doll’s house furniture left awry. On a shelf sit the smiling knitted figures of a policeman and circuit judge, the details meticulously rendered, right down to the judge’s red sash and purple-trimmed robes.

Through a pair of open doors in the adjoining interview room – the green room, they call it, on account of the carpet and the cushions – Ruth Marchant and a police detective sit in a pair of battered mock leather armchairs, reflecting on their afternoon’s work. The boy they have been talking to hasn’t made any allegations, but his reaction when the man it’s feared has abused him is mentioned – his erratic breathing, the way he starts to rock – makes the detective feel sure he has something to tell. Marchant wraps one skinny-jeaned leg over the other. “It’s there, isn’t it?” Beside them is a child’s version of their chairs, startlingly minuscule by comparison.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

The photos that changed America: celebrating the work of Lewis Hine

When Lewis Hine started photographing children at work in 1908, child labour was pervasive in American industry. His shocking images – from the cotton mills of Carolina to the coal breakers in Pennsylvania – helped bring about child labour laws. Hine was also renowned for his deeply empathetic portraits of immigrants at Ellis Island, and his work documenting construction workers at the Empire State Building

Continue reading…
Source: gad

Children at risk of 'catastrophic' injuries at indoor trampoline parks

Injuries sustained include bone fractures, concussion and spinal and brain injuries

The number of Australian children sustaining serious injuries at indoor trampoline parks has increased as the activity grows in popularity, a new report has shown.

Researchers analysed a range of injury surveillance databases and found nearly 500 children presented to hospital emergency departments across three Australian states from 2012 to 2017 due to injuries suffered at indoor trampoline parks.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

The children of alcoholic parents need help. I know this all too well | Liam Byrne

Even if you’ve brave enough to overcome the shame and stigma and seek help, you’ll find services are being cut heavily

There’s no way I would ever have become an MP if it wasn’t for my dad, Dermot. Warm, funny and a 60s radical, he was the son of Irish immigrants who was inspired into a life of public service by John F Kennedy’s quote that you should “ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country”. He paid my Labour party subs when I joined at the age of 15. But he struggled with alcohol for much of his life and, nearly two years ago, that chronic dependency killed him.

In a heartbreaking moment on a cold, grey dawn on St Joseph’s day – the patron saint of fathers – the nurses folded down his blankets so I could hold his hand as he slipped away. In the weeks that followed, I knew I had to start speaking out about the plight of children of alcoholics. All two million of them.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

Raising a non-binary child: ‘As long as one of the side-effects wasn't death, it was the right way’

A mother talks about her teenager’s gender journey

‘There was a moment, at the height of the problems, where I felt I had lost my perfect girl and now I had a broken boy. I had no idea how to deal with that, so I just forced myself to think ‘I will be really positive: I have not lost a daughter, I have gained a son.’”

Ally is recalling the turmoil, two years ago, that surrounded her then 14-year-old daughter Caleb’s decision to transition from female to male; what she didn’t realise then was that Caleb’s journey had only just begun. After three months of taking testosterone, Caleb decided not to transition – choosing instead to avoid identifying as male or female – and began to identify as non-binary, using the pronouns they and their.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

‘Young black people can be heroes too’: the campaign to send kids to see Black Panther

From Harlem to Peckham, the Black Panther Challenge has blossomed into a worldwide celebration of race, identity and empowerment

It seems like only yesterday that Marvel released the official trailer for what can now be described as the franchise’s most anticipated film to date, Black Panther. Fans have been waiting for the moment when they’ll finally experience the nation of Wakanda and now it is almost here: in less than a week, everyone will be able to watch the latest addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Black Panther is proving to be more than just a hashtag trend: it is a film of considerable cultural significance for black communities around the world. So high in fact, that it inspired Frederick Joseph, a marketing consultant and activist from New York to set up a GoFundMe campaign called “Help Children See Black Panther”.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

What terminally ill children taught this doctor about how to live

Dr Alastair McAlpine asked some of young patients what gave them joy and meaning – their answers surprised him

As a pediatric palliative care physician, I spend my days working with children who have life-threatening or life-limiting illnesses and their families.

Although many people think of us as the harbingers of death, in reality, doctors like us aim to maximize quality of life, especially when that life is likely to be shortened. We recognize that these children are so much more than just their illness and that they are part of a family. We focus not just on their medical needs but also on their psychosocial and spiritual ones as well.

Continue reading…
Source: gad

How can I control my child’s social media use?

Julia has a problem with her 14-year-old son’s use of Instagram and Gmail and would like to take control of his accounts

Why do social media sites such as Instagram, Twitter, Facebook etc deem children ‘adults’ in the vast and dangerous world of technology? My 14-year-old is engaging in a toxic relationship with a girl on Instagram. I am not allowed access to his account as it is protected by their user privacy protection agreement. How can a mother have their child’s account removed?

Earlier, I helped my son create a Gmail account for school purposes. I was not aware back then that there was something called Google Family Link. He used the account without any problems for years, but he has changed the password. There is explicit content in his emails that I need to get access to. As with Instagram, I cannot contact anyone at Google via phone, live chat etc, and helpful links keep sending me around in circles. How can I take back the account I created? Julia

The British government sets a minimum age for some things, such as drinking, driving and voting. It doesn’t have a minimum age for online activities. According to Ofcom (2015), 67% of five to seven year olds, 91% of eight to 11 year olds and 98% of 12 to 15 year olds use online services, and there are “walled garden” services – Moshi Monsters, Disney Club Penguin, CBeebies – that target much younger users than your son.

Continue reading…
Source: gadt