Changing the Language of Care

We have created this resource to provide you, the adults supporting us, with the words that we feel need to change, and the words we would prefer you to use.

We want to create a language of care that can be understood by people outside our world. We want to be able to chat with our friends, teachers and families about our lives, and not have to explain what the words mean.

Sometimes we feel different because we are in care. We hope that by changing some words it will help make things more equal, and make us feel less different. 

We believe the best way to make life better for young people in care is to learn from the experts- us!

Over 150 young people with lived experience of care from across Northern Ireland gave their views, opinions and ideas on the words and phrases that should be included in this dictionary. 

We hope it will make the language used more welcoming for young people.

Please remember, this dictionary is only the beginning of the change. We need you to use it to make the changes in the words and phrases you use every day. Don’t worry if you get it wrong at the start, or if you’re not sure what to say. Talk to us, get to know us, and we can show you how it works. 


So, let us take you on a journey through care in our words…

This project was made possible thanks to funding from the Act for Change Fund, comprising of:

stay informed!

Subscribe to receive exclusive content and notifications