Write Right About Me: Aberdeen’s multi-agency records improvement work

What is Write Right About Me (WRAM)?

Write Right About Me (WRAM) is a multi-agency improvement team aimed at developing ways of writing about children, young people and adults so that their voices are more strongly heard, and they can exercise their rights in their records.


Why is Write Right About Me needed?

For children, young people and adults to thrive in our complex world, the records that we write about them, and their lived experiences need to reflect their interests, concerns and hopes. Written records also need to reflect the care and love we feel towards them and our commitment to supporting them through their diverse life trajectories. To develop this approach towards recording and writing, WRAM is focusing on developing a more holistic understanding of writing practice across professions and the systems in which records are created. This involves thinking not just about which words we should or shouldn't use, but about how we use writing to represent experiences from multiple perspectives. We are listening to people and learning about their experiences of being written about and exploring positive alternatives for writing differently. We are developing ways of writing differently to better include and give agency to the voice of children, young people, and adults in their records.  

We are working towards developing ways of writing and recording that enable the voices of children, young people, and adults to be heard and expressed. At the same time, we are exploring our professional voices in writing and discussing ways in which we can write which enable us to offer and express our care for the children and young people we are working with. We are exploring the impact of our language choices on those being written about and working together to critically and creatively explore our uses of language, discourse, and metaphor. We want to write in ways that reflect compassion, kindness, love, people's rights, and an understanding of the personal impact of poverty, trauma and values people’s lived experiences.

We are learning to understand better the things that influence the way we write, for example, procedures, eligibility, time, and professional and organisational culture. The team are using the new knowledge gained from testing ways of writing differently with children and families, and professionals to develop guidance, learning and influence system review and development, that can help introduce and embed ways of writing differently. Learning how we can write collaboratively with children, young people, and adults as an integral part of our care and support and create time to add value to the work we are doing; making sure we are flexible in our approach; looking at the best ways to empower people through the kind of written records we create.

The WRAM team are working with children, young people, adults, and professionals to develop principles for how we write to help create a shared expectation, culture, and practice across agencies and those that we write about. This work will support us and our colleagues to write with a greater awareness about the language we use, its role in building futures, empowering people, and supporting the rights of those we write about, and it will also inform developments in new learning made available to a new workforce.

What are the aims of WRAM??

By December 2027 we hope that:

  • Our professional workforce will have a shared understanding, culture and practice for writing that upholds the rights of people, reflects compassion, kindness, love, and an understanding of the personal impact of poverty, trauma and values people’s lived experiences.
  • All records in services that support children, young people and their families will be written in ways that make them feel valued and provide a positive framework they can use in making sense of their life trajectories, do not stigmatise them or cause additional harm that can come when they read their record.
  • Children, young people, and adults we support will tell us that they feel listened to and experience records that feel fair, non-judgemental and demonstrate an understanding of what life is like for them and what is important to them.
  • We will have a framework for learning about writing for the professional workforce of the future, that provides learning about the writing they do, the skills, the practice, and the culture needed to write in a way that upholds best practice principles for those they support.
  • Children, young people and adults participate meaningfully in decisions and the creation of their records.
  • Systems, the procedures that guide how we work, and the digital recording systems that hold people’s records, support the principle of information ownership, collaboration, access, and rights in records so official narratives reflect their story, not just the facts the system holds about them.
  • We have processes that critically and creatively evaluate how we write as an integral part of indicators of quality in our care and support to people.

Who is involved?

The Write Right About Me team is made up of a wide range of professionals, organisations and individuals with an interest and commitment to changing the way we write for those we support:

  • Children’s Service Board: The Aberdeen Children’s Services Board represents all the key agencies that deliver services for children and young people in Aberdeen City. Its purpose is to ensure the effective delivery of services for children and young people at all stages of their development and growth. Our lead Partners include Aberdeen City Council, Police Scotland, Aberdeen Health and Social Care Partnership, NHS Grampian and the Third (Voluntary) Sector. They are one of the management groups responsible for actioning Aberdeen City’s Local Outcome Improvement Plan and is the strategic owner for Write Right About Me.
  • Aberdeen City Council: The Council are providing project management and technical support for this work. They are also operational partners, representing, Social Work, Education, Housing, Learning and Development, and Digital Transformation and taking lead role helping to progress work of the WRAM project
  • Aberlour Futures Aberdeen: Aberlour Futures is an early learning and childcare training service, providing a range of accredited qualifications for the ELC workforce and CPD programmes.   The service also delivers multi-disciplinary safeguarding training commissioned by Aberdeen City Council. 
  • Children 1st – we work to keep children safe, loved and well and together with their families. Children do well when their families do well, so we work with children and families in their homes, local communities and across Scotland. We offer practical, emotional and financial support to prevent and protect children and their families from harm and to support them to recover from trauma and abuse. We also work alongside children, young people and their families to uphold and progress their rights and to strengthen and improve the systems that are there to support them.
  • Children’s Hearing Scotland: Children’s Hearings Scotland (CHS) recruits, trains and supports around 3,000 volunteers across Scotland. Our volunteer roles are Panel Members and Area Support Team (AST) members. Panel Members make legal decisions with and for children and young people in children’s hearings, and AST members provide support and guidance to those Panel Members locally. You may have heard of us being referred to as the Children’s Panel too. Children’s Hearing Scotland are taking a lead role in the WRAM project helping to lead the How We Write area of work and linking this with regional improvement work responding to #KeepthePromise.
  • Includem: We are a Scottish charity, we provide intensive bespoke support to children, young people and families in challenging circumstances.  We believe that all children and young people should have a voice. Behind every young person we work with there is a story, which they are best placed to tell.  We feel that to continue to achieve this for young people we must work with and learn from partners in Aberdeen and across Scotland.  Ensuring that the language we use when speaking or writing about young people and their experiences is strengths based and not stigmatising.  this is why it is important to us to be part of this partnership. 
  • NHS Grampian: We are committed to drive changes regarding how we write about the children in our care and ensure practitioners think about the child's voice and lived experience of the child when writing.  We are also keen to distribute this learning and education to colleagues to allow a change in practice. 
  • Police Scotland: Write Right About Me is an exciting piece of work to be involved in.  The project is important for us all as corporate parents with collective responsibilities for our care experienced children and young people.  Police Officers are routinely in contact with children and young people, and often writing about them.  Words can encourage, support and empower but we need to use them well and avoid negative narratives which add to stigmatisation.  We are working together with our partners to ensure that when we write and talk about our children and young people using positive language of care in order to be able to get them the help and support, they need to thrive.
  • RAFT:  RAFT brings together 5 leading local and national charities in a single service to provide time limited support to children, young people and families in Aberdeen. We are part of WRAM's multi-agency project team because we are committed to helping our workforce write about those, they support in a way that reduces stigma.  We believe that no one should experience harm due to the way a record or report is written.
  • Robert Gordon University Aberdeen: We are collaborating to facilitate the delivery of education so that it includes WRAM principles in our contemporary, evidence-based e-learning to meet the needs of the health and social care services. We have strong links with our partners including the private sector. Our education programmes are innovative in their approach and are delivered by academic team members who are all qualified practitioners meaning students will benefit from their vast and varied clinical expertise and research knowledge. We aim to help our students to become knowledgeable, influential, skilled, compassionate and ready to work within a rapidly changing health and social care environment. We are taking a lead role in the WRAM project helping to lead the How We Learn How to Write area of work progressing the learning needed by a multi-professional workforce that supports children, young people and families.
  • Scottish Children’s Reporters Administration Aberdeen: Focuses on children and young people most at risk, SCRA’s fundamental purpose includes making effective decisions about a need to refer a child/ young person to a children’s hearing, enabling children, young people and their families to participate in hearings, ensuring fair process in children’s hearings and preparing for and participating in court proceedings where grounds for referral are disputed and hearing decisions are appealed.  A focus of SCRA’s work in terms of its commitment to Keeping the Promise and to becoming more compassionate corporate parents, is our use of language. We are committed to working with partners to find ways of improving all aspects of how we communicate so that our communications and communication within the children’s hearing system generally are clear, accessible and appropriate. This includes a focus on communications being more child/ family friendly, trauma informed, and rights based in approach as well as an emphasis on ensuring the child’s voice is heard.
  • The Open University Writing in Social Work Practice: The Open University has a long tradition of researching language in social context. WiSP project - Writing in Professional Social Work Practice - is an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded research project exploring the nature and consequences of current writing demands and practices in social work. We are providing vital sociolinguistic expertise needed to support this improvement work.
  • University of Aberdeen:
    •  School of Education:  As providers of Initial Teacher Education programmes for Primary & Secondary education (both undergraduate and postgraduate) as well as our BA in Childhood Practice, we have joined this project in order to be able to equip all our students with the key messages that are being discussed and developed within this multi-agency collaboration. In other words, we want our students to integrate the idea of writing with love, respect and allowing the voice of the child to be heard – including the voices of children with additional support needs who are often excluded from participating in, and contributing to, recording/writing processes. Our aim is to integrate the idea of respectful writing with and for all children into feedback with students who work in Early Years and Primary school settings within Scotland.
    • School of Social Services: John Bone is a social scientist at the University of Aberdeen whose work focuses on economy, politics, social stability and social change. He has a specific interest in the various ways in which poverty, inequality and insecurity affects individuals, communities and societies in general.
  • VSA Linn Moor: Linn Moor is a specialised residential school for young people with Autism and complex needs. We are passionate about ensuring our students live full and meaningful lives. We seek to ensure that they are taught the communication skills needed to exercise choice and control over their lives; they must be continuously encouraged to believe that they can affect change and have their wants and wishes acknowledged.  Therefore, being part of the Write About Me Project is very important; we value the opportunity to participate collaboratively in the development of guidance about ensuring that the voices of all young people are accurately represented in reports written about them. Finding creative ways that removes barriers to learning supports each young person to share their unique story and brings about positive change.


WRAM is a local City wide and national initiative. Locally, it supports Aberdeen City’s Community Planning Partnership Local Outcome Improvement Plan and Children’s Service Plan, and is integral to our Corporate Parenting Plan, and work to achieve our Child Friendly City Award and respond to the Promise. 

Nationally, WRAM aims to contribute to Scotland’s commitments set out in The Promise and professionals from a range of organisations are volunteering their time towards meeting WRAM’s goals.

WRAM is building links with local, national and international improvements around writing and digital transformation: