Children and young people experience stigmatization in a wide range of cultural, social and political contexts. This includes care experienced children, disabled children, refugees and asylum seekers, children of prisoners, children and young people with mental health issues, child and youth offenders, children affected by HIV/AIDs, children in poverty.

This programme will address the unique issues for children who experience stigma, as well as common issues which allow learning from the experience of stigma in adulthood. It will consider how stigma is experienced by children from different places, and how it manifests itself; for children themselves, in families and communities, and in provision of services. This knowledge exchange programme will bring together learning from theory, research, policy and practice, to promote change for children and young people living with stigma and marginalisation.

We will address three key questions from a multi-disciplinary perspective.

  1. How is stigma conceptualised and constructed across different disciplines and by children and young people themselves? What theoretical frameworks are useful in addressing stigmatisation across different groups of children and young people and across adult groups? 
  2. What are the issues in understanding the lived experience of stigma and how can stigma and its impact be measured?
  3. What is our understanding of best practice in addressing and alleviation stigma in childhood, and how can this be implemented in policy and interventions across different groups?

These questions will be addressed in three participative workshops which will explore theoretical, methodological, practical, and policy issues:

  • Cultural and Social Perspectives of Stigma in Childhood
  • Experiencing and Measuring Stigma in Childhood
  • Addressing and Alleviating Stigma in Childhood

Programme Team

Professor Andrew Kendrick - School of Social Work and Social Policy, University of Strathclyde
Professor Kay Tisdall - Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, University of Edinburgh
Charlotte Morris - Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice
Professor Colin Clark - Romani Studies and Refugee/Migration Studies, University of the West of Scotland
Jennifer Davidson - Director, Institute for Inspiring Children's Futures, University of Strathclyde
Viv Dickenson - CrossReach, Church of Scotland
Duncan Dunlop - Who Cares? Scotland
Lee Knifton - Mental Health Foundation
Dr Claire Lightowler - Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice, University of Strathclyde
Professor Tarja Poso - University of Tampere, Finland
Professor Nick Watson - University of Glasgow

Final Report

The final outputs from the project can be found below. Please contact the team for further information on the programme and any follow-up activities.