A recent census shows that there are at least 175,000 child carers in the UK, 13,000 of whom care for more than 50 hours a week. Many remain invisible to a system that would otherwise help them. Abigail is one of those children. This is her story.
Ten-year-old Abigail has never known her father. Her mother, Sarah, has multiple sclerosis, and Abigail has been her carer since she was a toddler – shopping, cooking, cleaning and attending to her personal needs. When Sarah is rushed to hospital, suddenly this comes to the attention of the social services, and Abigail has nowhere to go.
Though she doesn’t fit the usual profile of a child that specialist foster carers Casey and Mike Watson would take on, they are happy to step in and look after Abigail. It’s an emergency, after all – and all that’s needed is a loving temporary home, while social services look into how to support the family so that they can be reunited.
But it soon becomes clear that this isn’t going to happen. Sarah’s MS is now at a very advanced stage, and the doctors are certain that there will no longer be periods of remission. Abigail’s emotional state starts to spiral out of control as she struggles to let go of the burden of responsibilities she has carried for so long.
Sarah and Abigail insist that they do not need help, but with no other family to contact, social services are left with no choice but to find long-term care for Abigail, against their wishes. But Casey never gives up on a child in need, and she knows there must be another solution...
Includes a sample chapter of Sunday Times bestseller Trafficked.
Now in its fifth edition, Caring for Patients from Different Cultures covers a wide range of topics, including birth, end of life, communication, traditional medicine, mental health, pain, religion, and multicultural staff challenges. This edition includes more than sixty new cases with an expanded appendix, introduces a new chapter on improving adherence, and updates the concluding chapter with examples of changes various hospitals have made to accommodate cultural differences. Grounded in concepts from the fields of cultural diversity and medical anthropology, Caring for Patients from Different Cultures provides healthcare workers with a frame of reference for understanding cultural differences and sound alternatives for providing the best possible care to multicultural communities.
Breaking the Silence is the true story of Jenson, a nine-year-old boy who has been left home alone while his mother goes on holiday, and Georgie, who has been living in a children’s home since he was a toddler and is autistic. Both boys are about to become members of the Watson family and test Casey to her limits. Are their differences unreconcilable?
When Casey takes in two innocent and frightened ‘unfosterable’ children who do not know what it means to be loved in Little Prisoners, she is shocked by the levels of neglect that the pair have been subjected to. Casey is desperate to help these poor, lost children, who have been taken away from their family because they were considered at risk, but before she can even start to understand the horrific things that have happened in the past, she has to teach them the most basic of behaviours.
Ten-year-old Abigail is Mummy’s Little Helper, a child left to cope alone since she was 3 with her mother who has progressive multiple sclerosis. She’s suddenly no longer invisible to the care system, and needs support, but the emotional strain of her total change in circumstances starts to show when she arrives at Casey’s home. She doesn’t know how to cope without huge burdening responsibility. Casey is determined to find solution for this brave girl.