Calderdale Council is looking at the best way to support children looked after and care leavers.
At the meeting of Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on Monday 11 June, Members will discuss the revised Children Looked After and Care Leavers Strategy 2018-2021. This sets out how the Council intends to help its young people achieve their best.
Calderdale Council was one of the first local authorities to recognise its role as a corporate parent and corporate grandparent – meaning the Council supports not only young people leaving its care, but also any children they may have. This strategy would formalise this commitment and look at ways to further support children and young people who are or have been looked after.
The strategy focuses on making sure young people:
- Start healthy and stay healthy
- Are safe at home, in school and the community
- Enjoy learning and achieve their best
- Develop social skills and take part in activities
- Have a voice in decisions that affect their lives
- Stay in education and get a job
The strategy has been put together with the input of young people and if approved by Cabinet a child friendly version of the strategy would be prepared.
Part of the strategy includes a pledge to recruit foster carers who can meet the individual, diverse needs of young people.
Last year, a new fostering payment scheme was introduced which modernised the payments to carers, giving them the skills payment in full for each child they foster. Over a year on, the scheme has brought proven benefits to fostering, including improved placement choice and increased recruitment, helping the Council find carers that best meet young people’s needs.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services, Cllr Megan Swift, said:
“As corporate parents we are committed to giving children looked after the care and opportunity we would want for our own children and grandchildren.
“We know how important it is for young people to feel settled and I’m pleased that the fostering payment for skills scheme has been successful in recruiting more foster carers giving us more choice for suitable homes.
“All young people who come into the Council’s care should feel part of a wider family and this new strategy would help us ensure our children looked after and care leavers are well supported and able to achieve their best.”
The Strategy and detail on the positive impact of the fostering payment for skills scheme will be discussed at the meeting of Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on Monday 11 June, starting at 6pm.