The Leaving Care Team at Slough Children First has links to a number of organisations that can support care leavers on their path to independence.
Slough Young People’s Service – NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) Team
Slough Borough Council has commissioned a NEET Reduction Youth Worker who is working directly with Slough Care Leavers who are NEET, both in and out of borough. The Youth Worker can support you with the following:
- Impartial Careers Advice and Guidance- if you are unsure about the type of career that suits you.
- Advice around your options including, 6th forms, colleges, apprenticeships, employment, volunteering, work experience and higher education
- Information on types of qualifications available and potential funding options
- Support in creating CV’s and covering letters
- Job searching tips and strategies
- Interview skills training
- Support in applying for jobs either online or via recruitment agencies.
- Links with local colleges and education/training providers to make sure you can access opportunities that can help you reach your potential
- Relationships with local employers and training providers who can offer accredited training, work experience, apprenticeships and traineeships.
IAG (Information, Advice and Guidance) Sessions at The Curve
Slough Young People’s Services are delivering free IAG sessions for young people who require careers advice. Young people are welcome to attend the drop in sessions at The Curve in Slough during the following times:
- Job Club, every Monday 10-12pm
- IAG Sessions, every Thursday 2-6pm (Please contact your PA to book a slot)
The NEET Operational Meeting takes place once a month where management discuss suitable cases for referral, we will of course contact you for your consent before any referral is made.
The NEET Strategy Meeting takes place every quarter where we talk about creative ways in supporting more of our care leavers in participating in meaningful activities such as Employment, Education or Training.
Please speak to your social worker or personal advisor if you with to be referred to the NEET Reduction Team.
Slough Borough Council Housing Allocations and Housing Demand Team
To ensure you can access accommodation that meets your needs, our care leavers have priority status for housing and are automatically placed in Band B. At the age of 16, your social worker will add you to the housing register, it is important that you respond to any communication received from housing as it may impact your place on the housing register, please speak to your social worker or personal advisor if you feel you need support with this.
Before any offer of social housing is made, there is an expectation that you will need to be able to show you are ready for independent living, able to afford the accommodation and understand the responsibilities of having your own tenancy.
Slough Borough Council Housing will help us help you in a crisis. If you are homeless we will work with housing to try and source you alternative accommodation, whether this be through temporary accommodation, social housing or private social landlords.
The leaving care team have good working relationships with the SBC Housing Demand Team, they also have their own young person’s housing advisor who works very closely with the Leaving Care Team. If you suspect you may become homeless at some stage, please speak to your social worker or personal advisor at the earliest opportunity, as the more notice we all have, the better your housing outcomes will be.
Slough Adult Social Care will make sure you are getting support if you are assessed as having significant additional needs that require extra support. We let adult social care know by the time you are 16 if it is clear you will need additional support post 18. However we are able to make a referral at any point to adult social care and request a referral under the Care Act 2014 if we think extra help is required. We would need your consent for us to make this referral if you are over 18.
The Local Community Mental Health Team will make sure you are getting support if you are really struggling with your mental health to the extent it is affecting how you are living in the community. We also have our very own clinicians who would also be able to offer you support.
Local charities and voluntary organisations that can help support you if you have substance misuse issues. We can support you accessing them or provide you with the contact details if you would prefer to contact them yourself
Probation Service or YOT. We can work with these organisations to make sure you are supported and helped if you find yourself in trouble. There are dedicated workers who understand what it is to be looked after or a care leaver and can offer support accordingly
Prison Service – if you have been remanded or are under sentence wherever possible we will work with you to make sure your custody officers know you are a care leaver. While they can’t make concessions to your stay they will keep an extra special eye on you to make sure you are ok. They will make sure your PA gets to visit and we will make sure we work with you and your offender manager to make sure you get what you need to support your development and that you have a well planned discharge where all your needs are met when you leave custody.
National Insurance Number
Once you turn 16 we will help you apply for a National Insurance Number, which you will need once you turn 18 as it is very difficult to get a job or apply for benefits without it.
If you have come to the UK as an Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Child, you may not be able to get a National Insurance Number due to your immigration status. This is controlled by the Department for Work and Pensions and more advice on this can be found here.
Prior to you turning 18 your social worker will support you in applying for ID documents (if eligible), including:
- National Insurance Number
- Birth certificate
- Provisional driving license.
Your social worker will also support you in opening a bank account.