We have a new website go to gov.scot


Stay connected

On twitter: @GIRFEC

Email: girfec@gov.scot


Children & Families Directorate
Scottish Government
Area 2A(N)
Victoria Quay


The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 is about improving the wellbeing of children and young people in Scotland. The Act is wide ranging and includes key parts of the Getting it right for every child approach, commonly known as GIRFEC.

Wellbeing sits at the heart of the GIRFEC approach and reflects the need to tailor the support and help that children, young people and their parents are offered to support their wellbeing.

A child or young person’s wellbeing is influenced by everything around them and the different experiences and needs they have at different times in their lives.

What is Wellbeing?

Wellbeing wheel

 Wellbeing wheel

View larger image

Wellbeing is broader than child protection and how we tend to think about welfare.

To help make sure everyone – children, young people, parents, and the services that support them – has a common understanding of what wellbeing means, we describe it in terms of eight indicators.

The eight wellbeing indicators are commonly referred to by their initial letters - SHANARRI. 

Child protection services will continue to protect children and young people at risk of significant harm.

Eight indicators of wellbeing

  • Safe

    Protected from abuse, neglect or harm at home, at school and in the community.

  • Healthy

    Having the highest attainable standards of physical and mental health, access to suitable healthcare and support in learning to make healthy, safe choices

  • Achieving

    Being supported and guided in learning and in the development of skills, confidence and self-esteem, at home, in school and in the community.

  • Nurtured

    Having a nurturing place to live in a family setting, with additional help if needed, or, where possible, in a suitable care setting

  • Active

    Having opportunities to take part in activities such as play, recreation and sport, which contribute to healthy growth and development, at home, in school and in the community.

  • Respected

    Having the opportunity, along with carers, to be heard and involved in decisions that affect them.

  • Responsible

    Having opportunities and encouragement to play active and responsible roles at home, in school and in the community, and where necessary, having appropriate guidance and supervision, and being involved in decisions that affect them.

  • Included

    Having help to overcome social, educational, physical and economic inequalities, and being accepted as part of the community in which they live and learn.

  • key facts

    Key facts about welllbeing

How are the wellbeing indicators used?

Each child is unique and there is no set level of wellbeing that children should achieve. Each child should be helped to reach their full potential as an individual.

The wellbeing indicators help make it easier for everyone to be consistent in how they consider the quality of a child or young person’s life at a particular point in time.

Families and people working with children and young people can use the wellbeing indicators to identify what help a child or young person needs in order to help them access the right support or advice.

All services working with children and young people, and those who care for them, must play their part to promote, support and safeguard children and young people’s wellbeing.

Wellbeing tools