‘Qualifying’ young people may qualify for some limited financial support and advice on a case-by-case basis. These are young people who have spent less than 13 weeks in care, with some of that time in care being as a 16 year old. This is true even if you have been in care just one day.
Support you should get as a ‘Qualifying’ young person:
– Advice and support
– Support with higher education: if you are studying away at a college or university on a full time programme, and you need help finding accommodation during the summer months or breaks in term
– someone from the Leaving Care Service to keep in touch with you from time to time to make sure you are OK
– you are considered to have the same priority as any other care leaver on the housing list.
Support a ‘Qualifying’ young person might be able to get, on a case-by-case on circumstances:
– Independent Living Allowance, but only if you are engaged in education or training and are not in receipt of Income Support.
– Some practical assistance with finding a place to live in exceptional circumstances
– some limited financial support
– whilst you would not get a formal Pathway Plan, you would get an assessment and there would be an agreed programme of support that would come out of that assessment.
The reason there is a difference in support between ‘former relevant’ and ‘qualifying’ young people is because the law says that it is reasonable to assume that as you have not been in care for a long period of time and have been living with your birth family or with a Special Guardian, it is reasonable to assume that a ‘qualifying’ young person will have the practical and financial support of their birth family in a way that a traditional care leaver might not have. When this is not the case, then the Leaving Care Service might be able to help.