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All care leavers should receive a personal plan, to help them in their transition to adulthood. This is called a pathway plan. The plan should set out what children’s services will do to help that young person move towards independent living. It will include information as to what other agencies will do too.
Care leavers are entitled to receive ongoing support and advice up to age 25. This support should be set out in their pathway plan and they should also have a personal adviser to help them until age 25.
Care leavers who should receive a pathway plan include all ‘eligible’ children. These are young people aged 16 or 17 who are still looked after. It also includes all ‘relevant’ and ‘former relevant’ young people. These are those who have left care. Their plans must be based on a thorough and up-to-date assessment of their needs.
A pathway plan should be prepared before a young person ceases to be looked after. It should be a ‘live’ document that is reviewed regularly.
It should cover:
- Health and development.
- Education, training and employment, including career planning.
- Emotional and behavioural development. This should include building self-esteem, confidence and resilience, and learning to manage stress.
- Social and family relationships. This should include how to maintain contact with friends, family and other significant adults. It may look at helping with any negative aspects to those relationships.
- Managing money and personal finances.