This empathy building story will introduce you to children who may sound familiar or with whom you can relate. The 4 children we meet are carers in one way or another, whether helping at home with younger siblings or caring for an ill parent.
They are brought together for support by Darryl, an adult with experience of being a child carer. He took care of his blind parents growing up and knows the emotions involved, the missed opportunities and time to be a kid.
Wanting to give others in that situation a place to go, a chance to confide and support, he begins a club that aptly becomes known at The Elephant Squad. The children quickly trust and care for each other, wanting to do good things for each other.
They all have their roles to play and their relationships are heartwarming and real, forming true bonds and friendships.
As a reader, I felt that I was given a true glimpse into the life of a young carer, from worries over being away, needing time off school and being so tired they are unable to complete homework properly. I could also see the need for school staff to be aware of home situations so as to be empathetic and accepting.
I loved the characters and found them relatable, real and fascinating. Their resilience in the face of hardships was admirable and I kept coming back to each one and trying to relate to their individual circumstances.
Highlighting the importance of young carers is vital as they can be hiding in plain sight, not wanting to ask for help for fear of the consequences. By building this club, the group were able to find support and it helped to alleviate some of their worries and concerns.
Brilliantly written, I will certainly be recommending to schools.
“When a safe arrives in the school yurt, the children must think up a code that only they can know! Follow The Elephant Squad blog tour to discover the code! Each blogger will release one number and direct you to the next blog! Once you have the correct combination, email it to email@example.com to unlock your entry into a competition to win a signed copy of The Elephant Squad with a limited edition bookmark. Good luck!”
The number today is 8!