Ayden and Tara have known each other for four years. I visited them in Falkirk to talk to them about the importance of relationships. It quickly became apparent that banter is an important factor in their relationship. One of the most enjoyable parts of this interview was how Ayden and Tara kept finishing each other’s sentences.

You can find out more about their responses to our questions below.

What makes a good relationship between a worker and a young person?

Listen to the audio: 

Ayden: I’d probably have to start off with trust because you need to trust who you’re working with. And you need to have banter. You need to have banter.

Tara: I’d say trust, and I suppose being able to really listen, because I know you well enough, Ayden, even when you’re not saying something, you know? So, it’s like picking up on those…

Ayden: You can pick up on those non-verbal cues.

Tara: That’s exactly what I was going to say, and you said it better. So yeah, trust, and not only always doing work. We don’t only ever meet to do something, sometimes we just meet for a…

Ayden and Tara: …a catch-up.

What’s your most vivid memory of each other?

Listen to the audio: 

Ayden: The most vivid one the now is when you had to come and pick me up from high school.

Tara: I was actually going to say that one.

Ayden: Well, I got punted from high school when I was, like, seventeen and it was a deputy rector that I didn’t particularly like, or didn’t particularly like me. So I’d got my expulsion papers signed by him after having a… we’ll call it a heated discussion with some very choice language. So, I’ve went out and had a fag, and had to phone Tara because I was freaking out and thought I was going to get lifted. So I had to get Tara – I had to actually speak to somebody that could try and maybe chill me out and not try and antagonise the situation.

Tara: I said “Ayden, don’t move. Don’t speak. I’m coming to get you.” I came and got you. You were standing outside of school grounds…

Ayden: Having a fag.

Tara: Having another cigarette, yes, and I don’t know what we did.

Ayden: We went to Carol’s

Tara: That’s right. So we actually went to Ayden’s previous foster carers to visit. That’s right. It was a defining moment for us because we’d just kind of not long started getting to know each other and that was the bit about building trust and that you could phone me and I felt like actually, Ayden respects me enough to phone me and not anybody else.

Ayden: Aye, and not to go off on one.

Tara: So trust is a two-way thing, that Ayden trusted me enough to go and get him.

What do you do for each other that really makes a difference?

Listen to the audio:

Ayden: Well, I mean Tara’s there, When I need her she can be there. I mean if she’s off and that and I don’t get the memo, I will spam her phone about forty million times to just try and get a hold of her, but when I get a hold of her when I need her, she can help me right out.

Tara: And I think what we’ve done which is quite good with our team is that Ayden’s met most of the other team members…

Ayden: Aye.

Tara: So he knows who he can phone and he knows he can phone the senior [worker].

Ayden: If I can’t get hold of Tara, my first go-to is Libby.

Tara: Right, so what Ayden does for me that really makes a difference is that he answers his phone.

Ayden: And I give you more work.

Tara: No, I mean, you always answer your phone. That is – you don’t understand, Ayden, how much that is appreciated. Just answering your phone, or you text back, and if you don’t have credit you’ll get credit to say “I’ve got no credit, you need to phone me”

Ayden: Or borrow someone else’s phone

Tara: You really have, in terms of engaging with the service, you know – even when Ayden has – like, he had an interview last week and instead of me having to arrange to see Ayden to find out what was happening in his life…

Ayden: I phoned her on the train.

Tara: He phoned me: “I’m on my way to my interview, Tara. I’ll let you know how it goes.” Which is absolutely magic when you’re working with young people that are hard to reach and things like that. Never had an issue of getting hold of you, Ayden. The banter’s great as well.

Why do you think relationships are important?

Listen to the audio:

Ayden: I’d say they’re important as just…like for understanding each other. Because if you can’t, like if you can’t get along and understand each other, then what’s the point in working with each other? Simple as, like.

Tara: You don’t get the same level of understanding if you are working with a different worker every – all the time. So Ayden knows how I work, he knows how to get hold of me. He knows I’ll always respond. So, sometimes, you know, young people that you don’t really know will text you loads of times with question marks going “Why haven’t you responded?” where Ayden knows “She’ll get back to me, she’s never ignored me before”.

Tara: I think we’re quite lucky with this team that we’re able to…

Ayden: Aye, it’s quite a close-knit team so you can just get, even if they don’t know your file and that inside and out, they’ll still know a bit about you, so it’s like, “Right, she’ll not be in until Friday – “

Tara: “Can it wait to Friday or do you need something the now?”

Ayden: Aye, and “if you want we can take a message for her, or do you need to speak to somebody the day?”

Tara: And I think that what we’re saying, because when you had your interview, I said to my colleague “Oh, Ayden’s got an interview today”.

Ayden: Aye, and then it probably got passed around the entire office like wildfire, “That wee town rat’s got a job”.

Tara: No they did not. I know, I said to Iona “Oh, Ayden’s on his way to an interview” and she’s like “tell him good luck!” It’s just little things like that. You know you’ve not just got the backing of me, as the lone worker coming out to see you.

Ayden: Aye, you’ve got the backing of the entire office.