This report summarises the findings from the 611 children and young people who completed the Bright Spots’ ‘Your Life, Your Care’ survey in six local authority areas. The report concludes with recommendations for policy and practice.
The report contains some positive findings. For example, 83% of children and young people questioned felt that their lives had improved since coming into care. Compared to the general population, more looked after children also said that they felt safe at home, that they liked school and felt their carers were interested in their education.
However there were also issues around children saying that they felt low wellbeing, particularly pronounced for girls, and that they felt they needed more support. The results of the study raise important questions about the difference in caring for girls and boys and supports the need for a more ‘gender aware’ approach to be taken.
There were also issues for younger children in terms of understanding why they were in care and the report also highlighted the lack of and pressing need for children to have continuity.
Although current care planning guidance focuses on health and well-being, identity, social presentation and self-care it does not include a focus on how happy children are with their appearance. Given how important this is for all children’s well-being, this domain should be explored by social workers and inform care planning.
Download the full report: OUR LIVES OUR CARE Looked after children’s views on their well-being
Download the booklet: KEY FINDINGS AND POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS