Darren Coyne

It is with great sadness that we announce that Care Leavers Association (CLA) Project Manager Darren Coyne has died this morning, after a short illness. Darren was one of a kind. He was a straight-talking Yorkshireman who cared passionately about improving the lives of care experienced people of all ages. Prepared to tell truth to power, he was also an amazing support worker for individual care leavers and for groups of care leavers. He could, and did, work with anyone in the cause of helping care leavers, from members of the House of Lords to young care leavers in the criminal justice system in need of support. Wherever he went,… Read More

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Government Announces Care Review

Today Friday 15th January 2021 the government finally launched a review of the care system. “The Care Leavers Association welcomes today’s announcement from the UK government of the start of the promised review of children’s social care. We look forward to helping the review understand the long-standing failures of major aspects of the current care system and contributing to the development of a far more positive future for children in care and care leavers. We especially commend the statement that “Running throughout the review will be the voices and experiences of children, young people or adults who have been looked-after, or who have received help or support from a social… Read More

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Photo Voice

We are working in partnership with Photo Voice to explore the perspectives of care-experienced young people of different ages across England and Wales. The project uses photography and storytelling as a tool for advocacy and self-expression, as participants reflect on their perspective of what they need from relevant support services and provisions. We are looking for care leavers over 25 to take part in workshops for the next stage of the project which will provide participants opportunities to learn photographic storytelling skills to reflect on, and respond to, other participant insights into the care system. This is open to people with no photography skills and those with photography skills. Information… Read More

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CLA Goes Virtual

From Saturday 15th August The CLA will move to being a virtual organisation. Our Manchester office lease was up for renewal at an increased rate. This coupled with our experiences of working from home during Covid-19 led to trustees to take the decsion to move to a virtual setting. All of the team are now working from home. Our legal address is First Floor, Swan Buildings, 20 Swan Street, Manchester, M4 5JW. Post will still reach us at this address but may take a few days longer than normal. Our new telephone number is 0161 826 0214. We are using a virtual telephone system. All calls will be sent to… Read More

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Care in the time of Covid

Just wanted to share details about Care in the time of COVID a project for the care experienced community which has just been launched by care leavers at Oxford University. This project explores the day to day lives of care experienced adults in the UK during COVID-19. They would like to know how the care community is coping and what helps them. They want to record their experiences during covid in history. This involves submitting a diary entry and completing a short survey the participants well-being and how they’re coping – which should take no more than 15-20mins to complete. Diaries can be written (200 to 600 words), a video or audio entry (3 to 5 mins), a song, music, spoken word or a poem you have written… Read More

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The CLA reponse to Covid-19

In late March, the CLA – like many other organisations – had to respond rapidly to the Covid-19 pandemic (more details here – https://www.careleavers.com/the-care-leavers-association-and-the-covid-19-pandemic/). Following that period of adjustment, we are now relaunching our public activities. From Wednesday 15th of April we are resuming work on various projects and helping individual care leavers with advice, support and advocacy. Carrie Wilson-Harrop and Darren Coyne will provide advice, support and advocacy to care leavers and those supporting them. Alongside National Director David Graham the team will continue to work to influence national government and local authority policy and practice and in particular ensuring that care leavers are fully supported during and after… Read More

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The Care Leavers Association and the Covid-19 Pandemic

Like everyone else, The CLA has had to respond rapidly to the coronavirus crisis. For the safety of our staff team, The CLA office closed last week. Since most of our various funded projects require frequent interaction with other people, they are currently suspended. However, where we can do so without face-to-face interaction, we will continue with other project work. The staff team are mostly on leave whilst we organise ways to continue our work remotely for the time being. We need to find different ways, consistent with staff safety and wellbeing, to support care leavers. We are conscious that many care leavers now face fresh challenges as a result… Read More

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Government to ban care for 16-18 year olds?

The government has set up a consultation on the use of unregulated accommodation for 16-18 year olds. This comes after an investigation by Newsnight which showed that young people were being placed in appalling conditions and often left to fend for themselves. If a young person is put in a residential placement where they are receiving care then this falls under the scope of a childrens home and is subject to Ofsted regulations. If they do not receive care and instead just receive support, then they can be put into accommodation which is currently unregulated. The consultation outlines options to ban the use of unregulated accommodation for under 18s. However,… Read More

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