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My name is Ben O’Farrell, I’m 45 years of age and originally from Ireland. I’m a senior residential childcare worker which means I support children in residential care. I live in Govanhill (Glasgow) and work in Lanark.

My situation

The house that I work in is remote. Sometimes you drive up there and there is just countryside and snow falling and it’s like heading into Narnia. This location presents unique advantages and unique pressures for the young people living there.

Three things in my messy drawer


Passport photos

Christmas decorations from my mum

Objects on my shelf

Three objects I would rescue in a fire

I would rescue a reflective diary I’ve been keeping since I started my new role 4 months ago, I would grab a personal diary written a few years ago, and a USB stick that has all my uni work on it.

What I would change if I were running the country

I would change the System. I would replace Capitalism with an anarcho-communist society that would do away with money and produce things that we need, not things we can make a profit on.

Two random comments I’ve overheard

“The reins is too tight on his face”

 “Yous know nothing about nothing”

The kinds of things people say to me and how it makes me feel

Sometimes some of the kids I work with say things like, “You get to go home, to your families, to your partners…I am stuck here, I can’t get home.” This makes me feel sad for their situation, but at the same time when they make comments like these it’s usually because they are upset and are venting. They also tend to feel safe with you if they are willing to project this type of personal pain and anguish onto you.

Three things I can see out of my window

From my window I can see several Scottish flags mounted below the window of a local character that I once read about in the tabloids during the referendum fever of 2014. He is a recluse that one can occasionally see adjusting his flags and banners whilst playing loud power ballads on a Friday night. I can see a newsagent shop, whose store light is fabulously bright and has an interesting collection of people loitering outside at times. I can see a raft of endless cars both parked and moving, all in the same direction on my one way street.

Three pieces of music that get me through