Somerset Care leavers can now benefit from even more advice, support and guidance to help give them the best start into adulthood.
Somerset County Council has been working with care leavers, to develop a new Somerset ‘Local Offer’ website for young people at.www.somersetcareleavers.org.uk which will help care leavers from 16 to 25 years, understand the support and guidance they can receive from Somerset County Council, its partners and the local community.
The Care Leavers Local Offer provides support and guidance on a whole host of subjects, with tips to help young people make good decisions about their futures.
These include tips on housing, jobs, training, money, health and relationships. There are also practical guides and resources on how to keep healthy, feel good, keeping safe, being part of a community, how to budget and cook for yourself.
Somerset Care Leavers helped to put the offer and the website together, through workshops and consultation. Key partners also contributed including: the district councils, job centres, colleges and health services.
Somerset County Council as ‘corporate parents’ are committed to ensuring young people receive the best possible support, as they plan to leave care and prepare for adult life.
Councillor Frances Nicholson, Lead Member for Children’s Services at Somerset County Council said: “Children and Young people deserve the best support possible from their parents, both practical and emotional. As corporate parents, we want to make sure our care leavers feel safe, supported and know where to get advice and help.
“There are lots of ways in which people and businesses in Somerset can help young care leavers. This could be as simple and practical as providing household basics, cleaning materials, food stuff, or baby items, to providing supported lodgings for young people.
“We also urgently need people to offer work-experience opportunities, mentoring and community support. We have care leavers interested in jobs all kinds of areas, such as car mechanics, finance or even bee keeping. Whether you are a business, a charity or someone in the community who can help or offer to support our care leavers, please get in touch.”
If you are a care leaver aged between 16 and 21 and are, or were, in the care of Somerset County Council on or after your 16th birthday, you are entitled to some sort of support, advice or guidance.
This support can continue until you are 25 depending on how long you were in care and on your personal circumstances. Leaving Care staff are there to help you get the right sort of help. For further advice, phone 0300 123 2224 (please select option 1), email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the site at www.somersetcareleavers.org.uk
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For more information on providing supported lodgings for young people call 0800 587 9900, visit www.fosteringinsomerset.org.uk or follow us on Facebook/twitter ‘fosteringinsomerset’ @fostersomerset