Children in care are uniquely vulnerable and disadvantaged. Factors outside of their own control can make family life unstable and unpredictable. As a result there are times when they are placed with a foster carer or in a residential care home. This can be anything from a few days, a few weeks or a number of years and can occur many times throughout their young lives. The impact of these experiences can follow them in their adolescent and adult lives. Unfortunately the statistics don’t paint a very rosy picture. A significant proportion of our young looked after people may never reach their full potential. They may find it hard to engage or establish relationships and they can feel disenfranchised and on the edges of society. But we, the Cornerstones Foundation, want to help change the ‘stats’ and offer a better range of help, support and guidance so help them take their rightful place in the world. We believe these children deserve every chance to dream, aspire and achieve because we passionately believe in the potential of every child.
Did you know that a young person looked after is:
- 4 times more likely than their peers to have a mental health difficulty
- Less likely to do well at school with only 15% of children in care achieving five or more GCSEs at grades A* to C compared with 58% of children not in care
- There is a much higher proportion of care leavers not in education, employment or training at age 19 (34%) compared to 15.5% of the general population
- Only 6% of care leavers go to university – compared with 38% of all young people
- 23% of the adult prison population has been in care and almost 40% of prisoners under 21 were in care as children (only 2% of the general population spend time in prison).
And unfortunately the cycle often repeats itself, with adults who were looked after as children 70 times more likely to have their own children taken into care at some point.
Every organisation in Liverpool can and must play a part in giving some of our most vulnerable young people the opportunity to reach their potential and to live the life they choose.