Sarah Crafter is pleased to announce the launch of the new website for the ESRC funded project which aims to examine how separated children care for each other as they navigate contradictory, complex, and changeable immigration and welfare systems in England.
It is always very exciting to embark on a new research project. At the beginning there are a flurry of important activities to undertake, such as setting up team meetings, submitting the ethics applications and recruiting for new researchers. However, one of the most exciting elements is seeing the new project website ‘go live’! So it is with a great deal of pleasure that I am sharing the launch of our new project website for ‘Children Caring on the Move’ (CCoM) with you. The website tells you about our project and what it involves, the investigative team and our Advisory group, and some of the news items and resources that we have begun to collate. You can also read my first blog for the project.
The aim of this research project is to investigate how separated child migrants, and those involved in their care, make sense of, value, and take part in care relationships and caring practices within the immigration-welfare nexus in England. Little is known about how separated children’s care for each other as they navigate contradictory, complex, and changeable immigration and welfare systems. Nor do we know how separated children’s care for each other is understood and treated by relevant adult stakeholders, including social workers, foster carers, educators, youth workers, religious leaders, legal professionals, and policy makers. Placing separated children at its heart, this study asks: What are separated child migrants’ experiences of care and caring for others? How do various economic, social and political factors shape the care priorities of relevant stakeholders? What are the theoretical, policy, and practice implications of varying understandings and practices of care?
I think psychology has a curious relationship with the concept of ‘care’. In many ways ‘care’ sits at the heart of our psychological needs - to have a sense of inclusion, belonging, trust, growth, achievement, power and control of our lives. Yet there has been little direct conceptualisation within psychology of what it means to care and so the issue is often associated with other aspects of psychology. A good example is Bowlby’s discussion of the relationship between a mother and their infant, which is described as an ‘attachment’, whereby care is implied but not explicitly theorised. Wendy Hollway, a feminist scholar, provides the exception in her book on the ‘Capacity to Care’ which looks at care as both gendered and ethically subjective. She is interested in the psychological capacities to care, proposing that it is a dynamic set of practices that involves both ‘caring for’ and ‘caring about’. Even so, within this text, there is an emphasis on adults providing care and children receiving it. In our project, separated child migrants travel without their kin, and so we are interested in how children care for each other and how children's care for each other is largely absent from adult narratives and the implications this might have on further support, resources, and recognition for different forms of care.
We hope you enjoy the website and join us in following the progress of our project over the next three years