Social and relationships
As well as support from a personal assistant (PA), we may be able to offer you additional practical and emotional support, such as:
- a mentor. We have a mentoring scheme in place for young people up to the age of 18, and we are working to extend this up to the age of 21
- help to maintain or regain contact with people special to you or who cared for you in the past, such as former foster carers, Independent Visitors or social workers
- providing you with financial support to help you to re-connect and maintain relationships with your family.
Being an active member of society
We want our care leavers to be active members of society, and to have all the chances in life that other young adults have. We can help you participate in society in the following ways:
- providing information on groups and clubs you may wish to join
- informing you about relevant awards, schemes and competitions you can enter, in line with your talents and interests
- encouraging and helping you to enrol on the electoral register, so you can vote in elections
- offering work experience via our links
- informing you about voluntary work that we think you may be interested in
- supporting you to stay healthy and fit, through financial support for leisure and gym memberships up to the cost of £30 per month
- giving you advice and helping you to challenge any discrimination you face as a care leaver.
We have recently created a Facebook page for Staffordshire care leavers to join if you want to share your experiences and help shape future services. This means that even if you have moved out of Staffordshire or transport is difficult for you, you can still get involved.
Simply search for ‘Carlee Vera’ on Facebook and request to join if you are interested and would like to have your say.
Your right to be heard and taken seriously
You have a right to be involved in all decisions about your plans for leaving care. You have a right to support from an independent advocate if you want to challenge decisions about the support we give you.
Independent advocates can inform you about your rights and help you to be heard in meetings. They are separate from children’s services.
You have a right to see the information we keep about you, including the files and records written about you when you were in care. Your PA can help you to access these.
The Voice project
We offer care leavers up to 25 the opportunity to share their voices and experiences of being looked after and a care leaver as well as the chance to help shape future services.
Speak with your PA if this is something you would be interested getting involved with.