Young people in Wiltshire who are moving on from care will have a range of support offered to them as Wiltshire Council launches its Care Leaver Promise.
This week young people had a first glance at the range of support and offers available to them over tea and scones at a special event at County Hall.
The promise is designed to help those leaving care to be supported to find work, housing and transport as well as leisure opportunities.
A booklet detailing the promise was on hand for those attending the event which has taken place in Care Leavers’ Week which runs until 31 October. Care leavers helped put the booklet together and will continue to stay involved to shape how it is delivered in the future.
Dan, who left care three years ago was one of those involved.
He said: “I continue to have support from my personal adviser and this has been very helpful to me. I helped put this promise together as I know it is really important to provide this guarantee of support as we leave care.”
Laura Mayes, cabinet member for children’s services said: “We want to be there to support our young people leaving care as they become adults with all the opportunities and new responsibilities that involves. Just having that support to manage finances, live independently and access the opportunities of their peers is so important. This promise is helping us to achieve this.”
Terence Herbert, Corporate Director, Children and Education spoke to young people at the launch.
He said: “It was great to meet the young people who were attending and talk to them about the promise. They are really keen to be involved in shaping the promise for the future which is good news as this means together we can continue to provide the right support as they move onto the next stage in their lives.”
The Care Leaver Promise features a range of measures including having a personal advisor support until the age of 25.
Other commitments include:
- The Building Bridges programme. This helps disadvantaged young people into work. Under the programme coaches are allocated to each young person to help them find suitable employment in their local communities.
- No council tax fees for care leavers up to age 25
- A Grandmentors programme. This provides support for care leavers throughout their transition into independent living. The programme encourages volunteers age 50+ to share their experience and knowledge with care leavers.
- Priority banding for housing with the council acting as a rent guarantor for lodgings
- Apprenticeships at Wiltshire Council for those meeting the eligibility criteria