"Improving the coherence of whole government support for care leavers from care to adulthood will not increase dependency but will create a firm foundation from which real and sustainable independence can be achieved.
The journey towards sustainable independence is a lengthy one and responsibility for that process crosses different government departments. Commitment to improving cross-department work is not only a parental responsibility but has a sound economic grounding. Far from costing more, this approach will bring economic benefits, both immediate and in the longer term. For example, in comparison to a young person who successfully progresses through education to employment and independent living, a young person who struggles with this transition post-care is likely to cost the state an additional £90,000 before they are 30.
Investing in front-end financial support to assist vulnerable young people leaving care to establish themselves thus creates long-term benefits for both the young person and society overall." (Mike Stein)
Reference: Catch22, The Care Leavers’ Foundation, A National Voice, The Prince’s Trust. (2012). Access all Areas. London: National Care Advisory Service
Careleavers are a vulnerable group of young adults, trying to establish themselves against the odds, who often have no recourse to parental or family assistance and it is essential that the state recognises their vulnerability and gives them full access, and where necessary discretionary priority, to systems which ensure they get adequate assistance. As their corporate parent the state policies, from economic investment to housing policy, support rather than hamper the experience of young adulthood for care leavers.
This report stimulated a dialogue with the central government by suggesting particular areas and issues that should be addressed in four government departments: Communities and Local Government; Department for Work and Pensions; Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department of Health. In addition, it proposed that the Department for Education, which has primary responsibility for care leavers, joined with the Cabinet Office to lead a cross-government approach to improving journeys from care to adulthood.
This document narrative helped inform the government's (2013) Care leaver strategy.