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Talk, share and learn from each other

By Duncan Gordon, SCCR Trainer

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Teen-parent-issues

As stated in Emma Dore’s report Mediation and Homelessness Prevention in Scotland: A decade of mediation between young people and their families (PDF, 1.4MB), on average 13,350 young people (16-24) become homeless in Scotland each year. 45% of young people are reported to have left their family home due to conflict escalation.

The SCCR plans to change this by promoting a series of events and training to up skill parents, professionals and young people alike in conflict resolution. Our aim is to improve relationships and improve lives. In the past year, over 500 individuals have attended the SCCR training from all walks of life, from an Australian lawyer to a Stirling plasterer, providing a great opportunity to talk, share and learn from each other. The training is engaging and reflective with sessions which have been designed specifically for young people, parents/carers and staff, and its content has relevance to everyone.

Thanks to funding from the Third Sector Early Intervention Fund, sessions are free.

I am always intrigued by the backgrounds of people, where their interests lie and the vast knowledge and sometime experience of conflict within different settings. There is a similar diversity in the internal and external with young people, considering their lifestyles and upbringing. During training, I use a very simple illustration to show the journey to adolescence; because it works really well, I like to share this with participants and this has proved a successful learning tool.

Another exercise which involves looking at potential triggers has very clearly reinforced that young people identify matters of parental control and trust as triggers for conflict.

Interestingly, both young people as well as parents know this! Yet in some cases these “silly wee things” escalate into more destructive types of conflict.

I am of the belief that the two key elements of resolving conflict are generating:

  • Understanding
  • Cooperation

Of which communication also underpins both.

“You say that but it is not like that when people are coming to your door everyday giving you hassle”

Was a comment from a young person when discussing dealing with conflict. I acknowledged that theory and practice in the real world can be difficult, but reassured that with persistence, support, practice and time then life changing things can happen.

If you’re interested in finding out how to start to resolve your own issues or a communication at home, read some of my communication top tips or find out more information on our free events, conferences and training.

Duncan Gordon, SCCR Trainer

Duncan is a qualified trainer and has worked in a variety of roles within the third sector for many years. As the SCCR’s Trainer, Duncan delivers Conflict Resolution training to those who work with young people and families and to young people and families across Scotland.

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