About the Leaving Care service

Camden Council offer a help to all young people who have been cared for by a foster carer or in a residential care unit. This is known as being ’looked after’. 

We help young people from being ‘looked after’ and moving into adulthood and starting to live independently. We work with young people from the age of 16 to 21. In some cases we may support a young person until they are 24.

Young people can choose not to use our service at all, or think about using the service when they are older.

How to access help from the leaving care team?

The young person’s care worker or foster carer can make a referral to the Leaving Care Team. It covers basic information about the young person. Someone from the team will be at the young person’s next review or planning meeting and will start the assessment.

To make a referral for yourself or someone else please contact the looked after childrens service.

Types of help Camden can offer for young people who have left care

Casework

This is mainly about dealing with developing the young person’s independent living skills and preparing them for leaving care. We will support someone from when they are still looked after until they are living independently.

Aftercare

Once young people are successfully living independent, our duty system and drop-in sessions will meet many of their needs. We can also help young people contact other relevant and supporting organisations.

Health assessments

This is a health service especially for young people looked after by Camden Social Services. If a young person has had different placements or been unable to get to school, they may have missed out on health care information. This service aims to ensure that they get that information.

A health assessment is a chat every year about their health. This covers a whole range of things like an eye test, growth and blood pressure measurement, visit to the dentist, vaccination and sexual health. They can also get counselling if they need it.

The aim is to make sure young people leaving care look after their health and have information to help them decide about things such as smoking, drugs, alcohol and sexual health. Young people can choose to bring someone, such as their carer, with them.

The nurse will only pass information to the young person's social worker in rare cases, if she is concerned that the young person is being harmed or their safety is at risk. This is to ensure that they get the support they need.

To find out more, contact Tina Aderibigbe, nurse health adviser, on 020 7530 3036.

•download: What is a health assessment? (PDF)

Mother and baby group

We have a weekly support group for young mothers who have been in care. We run a wide programme of activities and events.

The group is a safe space for young women to explore issues about being parents. They get support from each other and find out about childcare and development, primary health and sexual health from other professionals. We run the group with Caversham Family Centre.

Housing

We may be able to arrange and support appropriate housing for care leavers. This may range from supported arrangements in current foster placements, semi-independent arrangements, temporary accommodation and permanent tenancies. 

Leaving care grant

We can provide a grant to help young people establish and equip their new home.

Education, training and employment

We will support young people in developing the skills, qualifications and experience necessary to help them get a job. 

Drop-in

This is a weekly service for care leavers. The drop-ins offer a space for them to meet in a setting that is sensitive to their needs and interests. Social workers will work with other professionals to provide activities to support care leavers as they move towards independence and beyond. 

Financial support

We may be able to offer financial help in the following circumstances: 

•emergencies,
•income maintenance,
•education and training support,
•special payments, 
•housing needs.