Children in Care and Leaving Care services
Children in Care
When support in the family home is not the answer to serious problems, and no one else in the family is able to help, a child may need to be looked after elsewhere either temporarily or permanently.
A child or young person who is 'looked after' will have been taken into the care of the council through a court order or with the voluntary agreement of their parent(s). They may be looked after in a children's home, by foster carers, within their birth families or other family members.
The responsibility of local authorities to improve outcomes and actively promote the life chances of children they look after is referred to as "corporate parenting" in recognition that the task must be shared by the whole authority in partnership with partner agencies along with parents.
The role of corporate parent is to act as the best parents for each child they look after and to take action to speaking out on their behalf, arranging for appropriate services to meet their needs, standing up for them and representing them as needed, to ensure they grow up in the best possible way.
The Corporate Parenting Board consists of a cross party group of elected members, supported by key officers and partners. The Board has responsibility to ensure that the local authority meets its corporate parenting responsibilities.
- Corporate parenting factsheet [90kb]
- Bury's promise to children and young people in care [132kb]
- Corporate parenting strategy 2017 - full copy [337kb] Bury corporate parenting strategy 2017 - summary [421kb]
- Corporate parenting training offer [291kb]
Children In Care Council
Children who are looked after and are 12 years and older have the opportunity to become members of the Bury Children in care council.
Children and Young people in care team
The Children and Young People in Care Team is made up of professionals from different agencies that are committed to the needs of children who are looked after by the local authority.
Bury Council has signed up to the Looked After Children's pledge, that was developed by the children in care of Bury Council and has agreed to ensure that the following statements are implemented for Bury children in care:
We will always tell you why you are in Care
We will make sure that you live with people who care about you and keep you safe
We will let you live with your brothers and sisters and make sure you understand the reason if this is not possible
We will involve you in decisions that affect you
We will help you to talk about your feelings and listen to what you say
We will support you to take part in hobbies and leisure activities
We will help you to do well at school, college, and university
We will make sure that you can live with your foster carers up until the age of 21 if this is what you want to
Children in care from other local authorities placed in Bury
If you are planning on placing a child or young person in Bury from another Local Authority which is 'at a distance' you should consult with us and notify us of any placements. All notifications by other local authorities of looked after children placed in Bury, should use the following forms and guidance
- Bury Notification Form OOA [379kb]
- Out of borough placement letter [196kb]
- Out of borough placement letter to DCS [169kb]
- CLA Placement Pathway [57kb]
and be sent to email@example.com .
Leaving Care Services
Bury Through Care Team can help looked after children and young people get ready for independence and provide support once they have left care.
We understand that leaving home at any age is particularly difficult without the support of your family and friends.
The staff at Bury Through Care Team are governed by The Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000. This tells us that we must make sure that children leaving care and entering adulthood are not isolated and are able to participate socially and economically in society.
Preparing for independence may not be easy. You will need to adjust and make some changes to the way you live your life and the amount of responsibility you have. Your personal advisor will help you through this. We hope that when you have reached a reasonable level of independence you will see how well you have adjusted.
The service offered to care leavers includes:
a personal advisor, who will offer support to care leavers through the transition to independence and adulthood
a pathway plan - each young person's needs will be assessed and plans to meet those needs/aspirations will be set out in this plan
keeping in touch - personal advisors now have a duty to keep in touch with young people until they reach the age of 21, or 24 if they are in education
responsible authority - the new act states that the council who last looked after a young person remains responsible for supporting them until they are 21 (or 24 if in education)
new financial support - young people who have left care, and are not on a care order and are aged 16 or 17, are no longer eligible for benefits. They will receive income maintenance from children's services.
Bury Council Care Leavers local offer [546kb] - this guide describes Bury's Local Offer in support of all of our Care Leavers.