An exploration of involvement with Street Soccer Scotland for participants who have experience with the care system.
This project is a partnership between Queen Margaret University (QMU) and Street Soccer Scotland (SSS). SSS is a Scottish charity with the vision to provide opportunity and build hope through the means of football. Highlighting poverty as a major contributor to reduced prospects, SSS engages with individuals from all backgrounds. Through their 2016 April census, SSS identified a large proportion of participants who had experience of the care system and would like further to explore engagement with this group. It was agreed that the project would be used to formulate a written report which aids understanding of the essence of why individuals, particularly those who have care experience, engage with SSS. Aim Occupational Therapy’s core beliefs centre around engagement and participation in meaningful activity meaning this thesis aligns well with this profession. The aim of this study is to explore the involvement with SSS for participants who have experience of the care system. Method Using a generic qualitative research design, semi-structured interviews were conducted around topics of care experience and engagement with SSS. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the information collected and identify common themes. Results The results showed that individuals’ experiences of the care system are unique. Care experience impacts on an individual’s adult life. SSS allows participants, particularly those with care experience, to build strong relationships, develop skills and receive support. Conclusion The findings of this study are significant for Occupational Therapy as they identify the vital role occupational engagement can have for an individual. Moreover, this study has recognised the need for looked after children to receive support throughout their time in care and when transitioning into adult life – something which Occupational Therapy can play a crucial role in.