New projects have launched to improve the education and training of young people leaving care, helping them make the transition into independent life.
Care leavers will benefit from a £5 million investment in programmes that deliver specialist, bespoke support through personal advisers and transition coaches. The pilot schemes are designed to develop care leavers’ confidence, communications and skills needed to enter sustained education, employment and training.
Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:
Leaving care can be a daunting time for many young people, who often face the challenges of growing up without the support network others might take for granted.
We all share a responsibility to act and these new projects are focussed on improving the lives of those young adults who have had difficult starts in life.
That is why these pilots in Bristol, Lewisham and Sheffield are so vital in helping ease the transition from care to independence, so they are not facing these milestones alone. Where you start out in life should not determine your destination, so I hope that through this work care leavers get the tools they need to get into training, education or employment.
The £5 million is being used to fund the first ever Social Impact Bonds aimed at preventing care leavers being out of work and training – which have previously been used to tackle problems including homelessness and long-term health issues.
The news comes as the latest data on care leavers aged 19-21 show that 39 per cent of care leavers are NEET, compared to 13 per cent of 19-21 year olds in the general population.