The Through Care Service – Who we are and what we do
The through care service in East Sussex is a group of professionals, which includes personal advisors, social workers, a mental health nurse, the virtual school and our dedicated admin team who will support you whilst you prepare and after you leave care.
Leaving care can be a daunting process but the through care service are here to support and advise you with this. This website will provide you with some more information about what this support will look like, including your rights and entitlements, as well as some general information which may be helpful to you.
When will I leave care?
The through care service will support you from the point you transfer to our team. The best time for this to happen will be discussed with you and the people who look after you, but it can generally be anytime between when you are 14-16 years old.
Being ‘looked after’ by the local authority will cease when you reach 18 years old, however the service will support you in the transition to independence until you are at least 21 years old (25 years old if you are in higher education or training). At the moment, there is also a new law being progressed through parliament, which could see you being able to receive support from the service until you are 25.
Social workers & personal advisors
Social Workers from the through care service will generally start working with you from 16 years old (sometimes a little bit before too), until you reach 18 years old, at which point you will be allocated a Personal Adviser.
Sometimes Personal Advisers will work alongside Social Workers to support you, while you are still in care. This is dependent on a person’s individual needs, which may mean there can be some overlap time where you are working with both a Social Worker & Personal Adviser.
You’re worker should provide you with various different types of support by regularly staying in touch. This includes updating and supporting your pathway plan, giving you practical advice, supporting you to access to other services (mental health, or housing for example), encouraging you to develop your independence and anything else you may need support with.
Your PA is there for you to discuss your future with, so make the most of us by keeping in touch. You can agree the best way to do this and how often as part of your pathway planning.
What the through care service will help you with and what you can expect from us
Download the welcome document that applies to you
Pathway plans and reviews
When you turn 15 and 3/4, your social worker should complete something called a needs assessment with you, which looks at your needs and what support you need, so we know how to best support you.
You will continue to have LAC (looked after children) reviews until you turn 18 years old. In preparation for these reviews, after you turn 16 the support you need and the goals you want to achieve will be reviewed with you through something called your ‘pathway plan’.
A pathway plan is an assessment of your current strengths, needs and goals that your social worker or personal advisor will complete with you every 6 months, unless you experience an unexpected change in your life or request a pathway plan to be completed earlier.
This is your plan, and your worker will discuss how you can be best supported with you and will obtain your views to include in the document. The pathway plan aims to identify your support needs, how you will be supported to achieve your goals and to identify how you will be supported to achieve gradual independence. The main areas this plan covers are:
1. Details of Accommodation or Housing Needs
2. Education, Work and Training
3. College / University / Employment
4. What would you like to achieve in the next 6 months-2 years?
5. Health and Development Plan
6. Family and Social Relationships
7. Family contact
8. Leisure activities
9. Life Skills (Practical and other skills needed to live independently)
10. Financial Support Plan/Budgeting
Type of support
The level and type of support you receive from the service is determined by your age, and circumstances, which create a legal status for you. The legal definitions and your entitlements are set out in a law called the Leaving Care Act (2000).
For more information on the Leaving Care Act look here
What’s your legal status and what support will you receive?
For help working out your care leaving status, and what support you are entitled to take a look here
Coram voice is an organisation which has created a leaflet which details what support you are entitled to, depending on your legal status.