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People in Care
Going into care can be a difficult and confusing time if you are being separated from your family. This can happen for a number of reasons, if there are problems at home and your parent or close family is unable to look after you and care for you properly.
There are people from the care system who will be there to support you through the process. These people are there to help you and your family through this time and to make sure you are well-looked after.
They are also there to help you and listen to your concerns, so even if it feels strange to talk to them and tell them how you feel, they will understand your situation.
- Every child who goes into care will have their own social worker. Social workers are employed by Social Services, a government organisation that is there to help people get the best quality of life
- Social workers are there to help you and your family and get the support you need and will work to try and make sure you can return home to live with your birth family as soon as possible
- Your social worker is responsible for making sure your education, health, safety and general well-being are taken care of while you are in care
- Every child in care will have a ‘care plan’ which sets out the day-to-day arrangements for your care. You can discuss this with your social worker
- You will have regular meetings with your social worker throughout your care to see how you are, as well as fixed review meetings to access how the situation is working for you
- They will also be there for you when the time comes to leave care
- Your social worker is there to protect and look after you. If you are worried about anything, they are there for you to talk to them
Children’s Rights Officer
- Every child in care can access their personal files if they want to. These contain information about you, your family, why you are in care, your care plan, your education and health. The information in the file is confidential to the local authority
- In exceptional circumstances, you might be denied access to your file. If this happens you can contact the Children’ s Rights Officer in the local authority, who will investigate the reasons why you are not allowed to see the file
- If you want to make a complaint about Social Services or your social worker, speak to an advocate - this is someone who doesn’t work for Social Services and is trained to be able to help you. They will help get your voice heard and support you in your complaint
- There are a number of advocacy organisations that can help you, as well as a free confidential telephone advocacy helpline service Meic. Meic will be able to recommend what to do next or put you in touch with the right people or organisations