National Care Leavers Week begins on Wednesday 24 October
Can you provide support for a vulnerable young person who has left the care system? You could be the difference between homelessness and a brighter future.
Mia is 18. So far in her life she’s been exposed to abuse, family drug and alcohol problems, bereavement, and has lost her home. Mia moved from friend’s house to friend’s house until she found Bea.
Bea became her Stepping Stones carer and gave Mia the support she needed to begin her life again. Mia is now studying and volunteering in her local community to gain work experience. Knowing that Bea is there to offer her guidance and a safety net gave Mia the confidence to start her life again.
If you’d like to help a vulnerable young person, ask about becoming a Stepping Stones carer. You could really help by offering a bedroom to, and mentoring, a young care-leaver in Somerset. It would provide them with a safe space, a ‘stepping stone’ to adulthood while they attend further education or begin a career.
Annabel and Linda live together in Bridgwater, in a Stepping Stones placement, with Linda’s two rescue dogs. Linda has been a Stepping Stone for years now, initially with her husband and then as a single carer when he passed away. She shares how rewarding it feels to help someone: ‘I really enjoy it. The Stepping Stones team are so good at matching the right young people with the right carer and they’re very supportive. Some placements worked so well for us we had them with us well into their twenties. We still receive Christmas cards and photos of the families they went on to have.’
Sue, in Frome, has been a Stepping Stone for just over a year now and explains the mutual benefits: ‘After my divorce, when my kids had gone off to university, the house felt a bit lonely, really. I enjoy having the company and a young person around again, plus I love knowing that I’m making someone else’s life better!’
Find out more about ‘Stepping Stones’, including information on allowances, training, support and discount packages.
To help us spread the word on fostering and the Stepping Stones initiative, why not display a poster for us? Click on the links below to download a printable pdf:
Somerset County Council, County Hall, Taunton, Somerset, TA1 4DY
Tel: 01823 357087 Mobile: 07866 784585 Press Office: 01823 355020