TAPACY for Children who are Carers – Kent

< Kent

This TAPACY scheme in the UK took place in 3 areas of Kent over July and August 2016. 3 groups of young people were taught some TA concepts and then produced portfolios of work to show their understanding of the TA concepts and how they are using what they’ve learned to help them in the future.

The young people were mainly young carers.  The project was led by Kelly Donaldson, Head of Young Carer’s service at IMAGO COMMUNITY, who is in training for CTA Psychotherapy.

Among the concepts they covered were strokes, rackets, drivers, contracting, ego-states, transactions, drama triangle and OK corral.

The young people showed their understanding  of these concepts by a number of means:

Some of them made masks to demonstrate rackets.

This picture demonstrates the authentic feeling of sadness being covered up by the racket feeling of happiness

Mad (authentic) covered up by sad (Racket)

They made clay models for drivers

To demonstrate ego-states/ transactions they drew pictures and acted out different scenarios

They also acted out scenarios to show the drama triangle and used stories to show the different positions.

In general the young people said they felt better about themselves and communicated better leading to improvements in their relationships.  There were some overall changes observed by the teachers of the groups as the sessions went on, for example, both the giving and receiving of positive strokes increased and the types of strokes were moving from conditional to unconditional.  Young carers tend to have a great sense of responsibility as they often spend a lot of time looking after others and don’t have much opportunity to be children and as such there were some common factors observed such as Be Strong driver, a lot of Parent ego-state and/or the Victim role on the Drama Triangle. As the sessions progressed there was a development towards expressing the Free Child and showing vulnerability by asking for help to get their needs met.

There were individual examples of awareness and changes in behaviour. One group contained 3 siblings who were able to recognise their usual roles on the Drama Triangle and as a result were able to change how they behaved to towards each other.  A 12 year old girl said she had a Hurry Up driver and realised that sometimes slowing down can help her as she makes mistakes through rushing.

In September the 3 groups came together for a celebration event where 15 young people received the TAPACY award. Kelly reported that it was a fantastic evening and great to get the three groups together.

IMAGO are planning to teach another 3 groups in January 2017.

UK TAPACY Update – June 2017

At the beginning of this year a small TAPACY project was run by Imago Community. This project was led by Jo Rickword. Six young people met in Tunbridge Wells in Kent for several weeks. They started by making a contract and then went on to learn about ego states, transactions, drivers, strokes and other TA concepts.To demonstrate their understanding and how they may apply their knowledge in the future they produced work for their portfolios using a variety of media including videos, clay models, written work and drawings.

​On 30th May the young people were delighted to receive their TAPACY awards. Jo reported that they received some amazing feedback, one boy was particularly grateful for the programme as he has changed how he approaches certain situations and has been thinking about communication and attitude a lot more since.

​This brings the total of young people receiving the TAPACY award to 21.  IMAGO Community have another two courses planned for later this year and the beginning of 2018.