Making a complaint
I'm unhappy and something is bothering me. What can I do?
Okay. Well here's what not to do. Don't keep it to yourself! Everyone wants you to be as happy as you can possibly be and you should never bottle stuff up and let it fester. Make sure you tell someone about it, whether that is a friend or an adult that you trust. If you want to change the situation you are in then you might want to think about making a complaint. Adults make complaints all the time and it is about changing something in your life not about getting yourself, or anyone else into trouble.
What can I complain about....
Anything that makes you unhappy that could be sorted out by making the adults in your life aware of it. Here are some of the things that people have complained about in the past
I haven’t been treated fairly; and nobody seems to be listening to what I'm saying
My care plan says one thing but I want something else
I am not happy in my placement and I would like to move somewhere else.
People say they're doing stuff but everything is taking ages.
All my friends at school are allowed to do something and I'm not, and it makes me feel different.
I'm not happy because everyone seems to know my business.
It sounds like a lot of effort - why should I complain?
There are many reasons that you should complain - and the first reason should be 'For you!' Your complaint should help make those around you aware that you are unhappy and start changing things for you. The second reason is 'For people like you' - if it's happening to you, it might be happening to other people too and by putting in a complaint you are making managers aware that there is a problem with the whole system. A complaint is not about getting you or other people into trouble, it’s about making sure that you are being listened to. Every year the complaints are analysed to look for trends to see what problems there are for children in care across the whole of Bristol.
I'd like to make a complaint - I just don't know how to.
Probably the best thing to do do is 'Contact an Advocate' - this is a professional person who will be able to explain the whole process to you and who will be on your side through the entire complaint.
If you would like an Advocate you can call the Freephone helpline on 0808 808 1001 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Freepost – NYAS, Tower House. 1 Tower Road. Birkenhead. Wirral. CH41 1FF
It isn't just advocates that can make a complaint though, any adult can do it on your behalf or you can do it yourself. You can contact Bristol's Children's Children & Young People's Services Complaints Team on 0117 922 3707
So please don't sit on a complaint if you have one, nothing good can come of keeping it to yourself. Make sure you get your voice heard and your life sorted.
If nothing ever changed; there'd be no butterflies - Anon