Headlines: November 3rd, 2010

The Children’s Rights Director has criticised the lack of preparation for children going into care. He has raised concerns about how ill informed and unprepared many children are when they enter care

The Director’s report ‘Children going into care’ provides first hand accounts of children’s experiences before entering care. Research revealed the many children didn’t know that they were going into care until it actually happened. They then have no choice about where they are going to live. One of the children interviewed said: “someone could have talked to me and told me what was happening” and another said “… not just dump in a placement, pass over my bags and some forms and leave me with strangers!!”

However, the report also shows that once children are in care, the majority felt the right decision had been made for them to be placed into care, with most children reporting that their life was generally better since they came into care. One child explained: “my life has been a fair amount happier and quite a lot more settled since”.

Just over half of the children surveyed said that they received help from social workers before being placed into care, but some did not get any help. For those children who did receive help, very few thought that extra help would have been able to keep them out of care.

Commenting on the report, Dr Roger Morgan, Children’s Rights Director said:
“Coming into care is a major life change in any child’s life. However, it is made worse when children are not told what is happening to them and are unaware of where they are going to live. The fear and confusion that children experience when entering care could be lessened if they know at each stage what is happening to them. More must be done to inform and prepare children before they enter care.”