Care-experienced young people
Information for organisations who are providing, or are planning to provide services for young people who are care-experienced.
Where are we now?
We continue to support our care experienced young people up until the age of 25 through our extensive leaving care offer. At any one time, we support approximately 270 care experienced young people aged 16 - 25.
Our leaving care offer sets out our main areas of focus:
- Having your say – we have several active participation groups for young people to share their views and help to develop services.
- Setting up your home - Nearly half of our young people aged 16-25 live independently without additional support beyond their leaving care advisor, although the levels of additional support needed has risen partly due to an increase in the numbers of young people with increasingly complex health, education and transitional support needs.
- Managing your money – we work with local businesses to offer training and support for care experienced young people.
- Work and learning – 60% of our care experienced young people are engaged in education, employment and training. We work closely with local businesses who can offer employment and training opportunities.
- Health and wellbeing – we work closely with health colleagues to monitor and support the health and wellbeing of our car experienced young people.
- Family and relationships – it is especially important for our care experienced young people to build support network as they experience multiple transitions whilst leaving care and moving into adulthood.
- Getting involved – we actively encourage volunteering with local businesses and getting involved in local communities.
- Getting around – we offer support to care experienced young people learning to drive, and travelling in and around the city.
- Life in the UK – we know that young people who are claiming asylum or are new to living in the UK need additional support as they turn 18, and we work closely with specialist advisors to offer legal support and connect young people to local communities, businesses and support.
Where are we going?
The number of care experienced young people has increased year on year, and this is likely to continue for the next 3-5 years. Our focus is on preparation and planning for care experienced young people to live life as an adult.
Our current priorities are to:
- procure semi-independent accommodation for young people aged 16-25 jointly with the housing department, who often support these young people with accommodation once they turn 18. This will include a focus on providers offering different levels of support to match the young person’s needs and supporting them in preparation for them living life independently as an adult;
- review the need for placements for young people with high or complex needs to ensure safe and appropriate support is on offer;]
- review the need for placements for young people leaving care where they have a baby / child;
- review and increase the provision of placements for young people with learning disabilities leaving care to support them into independence; and
- continue to explore and expand on our local support offer for care experienced young people working with local businesses and partners
What does this mean for providers?
There will be opportunities for local semi-independent accommodation providers to join our framework to provide accommodation and support to young people leaving care. We are interested in hearing from providers who can offer specialist health and education support, including therapeutic support, to young people aged 16 to 25.
We know that we need more parent and baby placements available in the city.
We know that we need more provision of placements for young people with learning disabilities leaving care to support them into independence
If providers feel they can offer further support to our local offer, they should contact us.
Other useful information for providers
- National Looked After Children statistics
- Placement Sufficiency Strategy - our overall approach to supporting all of our children and young people to have a safe place to live and thrive.
- Corporate Parenting - our responsibilities and approach to supporting children and young people in our care.
- Children’s Pledge – our pledge to children and young people in our care.
Liam Mawhinney, Business Change Commissioning Manager