Stockport helps care leavers to improve the support they receive

Stockport takes part in successful national programme helping care leavers to improve the support they receive

Over 3 years children’s rights charity Coram Voice (with funding from Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and Segelman Trusts) has been working with 8 local authorities to help them understand the views and experiences of their young people and find new ways of making their lives better through listening to young people about what is important to them and what they feel would make their lives better. Stockport was one of the authorities chosen to take part in this national programme.

A new report from the programme has just been released – the core message is simple – to deliver the best support and services to care leavers you must work alongside young people. This is a challenge that Stockport have embraced despite the difficulties of working during Covid-19. Stockport heard from over 330 of their care leavers in 2 surveys about how life was going. The local authority and its partners then worked alongside young people to make improvements.

Some of the changes the young people are really proud of are how Stockport have helped them feel safer in their homes and how they have helped them maintain relationships with important people in their lives. Young people have told the council this has already started to improve their lives.

The Story of New Belongings report includes lots of other examples and shows how the programme has helped us in Stockport and in the other 7 local authorities to improve the lives of our care leavers.

Cllr Wendy Meikle, Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Education said:
“All of us in Stockport are incredibly proud to be taking part in this national programme to help deliver the best support we can to our care leavers. I am thrilled we have been able to help our young people feel safer in their homes and putting their wellbeing at the core of the programme. I look forward to finding new ways of making care leavers lives better in our borough.”

Linda Briheim-Crookall, Head of Policy and Practice Development at Coram Voice, said: “We were delighted to work alongside Stockport Council in the New Belongings programme. They showed a great commitment to listening to their care leavers about what was important to them and to take action together with young people to make things better. Across England we need to shift the focus of children’s social care to put young people’s wellbeing at the centre. Stockport are in a great position to carry on this important work.”

To read the full report, please visit Coram Voice.