If you are a ‘child looked after’ or a care leaver, we act in place of your parents.
This is not just one person but the whole of the local authority. By this we mean Somerset County Council and, our partners, like the district councils.
A corporate parent is everyone who works with and for ‘children looked after’ and care leavers.
The Children and Social Work Act 2017 tells local authorities that they must
- act in the best interests, and promote the physical and mental health and wellbeing, of those children and young people
- encourage them to express their views, wishes and feelings
- take those views, wishes and feelings into account
- help them gain access to, and make the best use of, services provided by the local authority and its partners
- promote high aspirations, and seek to secure the best outcomes, for them to be safe, and for stability in their home lives, relationships and education or work
- prepare them for adult life and independent living
The Somerset Corporate Parenting Board is a group of 12 County Councillors who meet with Council officers and people from other agencies – like health – every 2 months, to check that the services and support for ‘children looked after’ and care leavers are in place and of a good standard.
They hear reports about your health, your education, the places you live, how you take part in our services and how you prepare for adult life.
Young people are invited to come to the Board – which is held after school or college – and comment on what they hear or bring their own presentations.
The Board works to the 3-year Corporate Parenting Strategy – read the young person’s version