Who we are and what we do
There are four statutory care leaver definitions. If you are not sure what this means for you, you can ask your Personal Advisor or Social Worker for help with explaining your eligibility to Leaving Care support.
- you are aged 16 or 17 years
- you have been looked after for at least 13 weeks since your 14th birthday and inclusive of your 16th birthday* and still in care now
- or for 13 weeks* after your 16th birthday and still in care now
*It does not matter if the times you were in care were in a single period or over several different periods.
You are aged 16 or 17 years and have previously been Eligible but no longer in care.
You are aged 18 and up to 25 years who used to be an Eligible or Relevant young person.
- you are aged between 16 and up to your 21st birthday (up to 25 if in education) and was in care for less than 13 weeks on or after your 16th birthday but no longer looked after
- you were looked after immediately prior to the making of a special guardianship order and are now 16 to 21 years old
- you are aged 16 or 17, and been living at home with your parents for a period of 6 months either
- under Placement with Parents and your care order has now been discharged, or
- as a Relevant young person
- Coram Voice: I am a care leaver
Advice and support from a Personal Adviser
You are able to ask for support from your Personal Adviser beyond your 21st birthday and up to the age of 25, whether you are in education or training or not.
You will have a named Personal Adviser if you have Eligible, Relevant or Former Relevant Leaving Care eligibility. We will try to enable you to keep the same Personal Adviser, though this will not always be possible. The amount of support that you receive from your Personal Adviser will depend on what you want and your circumstances.
Between 16 and before you are 18 your Personal Adviser will focus on getting to know you and build a relationship where you will start the conversation about what you want for your future. They will help you (alongside your Social Worker) bring together your Pathway Plan goals and when you turn 18 will continue to keep your Pathway Plan under review.
Your Personal Adviser will be at your side to help you work through decision making, even if these are tough, and celebrate your achievements. Your Personal Adviser will be open and honest with you and help you figure out new responsibilities as life changes.
Support from your Social Worker
If you are 16 and 17 years old and also have Eligible or Relevant Leaving Care eligibility, you will have a social worker in your Leaving Care Service. Your Social Worker will be responsible for making sure your Pathway Plan is focused on what is going to happen both in the present and in the future as far as possible. They will include other important people such as family and friends that are involved in your life, as well as those who may be in your professional support network such as health and education to make sure everyone is working together and towards your goals.
If it is the right thing, your Social Worker may stay in your life a little longer than your 18th birthday to make sure things are in place and allow you time to get to know your Personal Adviser.
You can make contact with your Leaving Care Service Monday to Thursday, 9am to 5pm, and Friday, 9am to 4.30pm. If your named worker is not available you can speak to the duty social worker or duty personal adviser within these hours.
Other pages in this section
- Care Leavers: introduction and testimonies
- Comments, complaints and compliments
- Financial offer
- Key contacts for the Leaving Care Service
- Next steps and turning 21
- Participation (Your Voice)
- Turning 25: ‘always here’
- Your Pathway Plan
- Your right to be heard and taken seriously
- Youth justice services, probation and prison