At Cambridgeshire County Council, we want to help you be the best you can be. We want to work with you to uncover your passions and aspirations and help you to find the best path to achieve them.

Whether that’s through education and studying in college, going to university, doing an apprenticeship, on-the-job-training, or succeeding in the world of work. We are committed to helping you make the most of every opportunity and can offer you support, advice and guidance until your 25th birthday.

As well as the support you will have from your Personal Adviser to focus on your career goals, we will put you in touch with our Dedicated Adviser for Education, Employment and Training, who will listen to you, understand the potential obstacles you may face, and help you to overcome them.

Our Dedicated Adviser has links with the local colleges, government organisations such as the DWP, and with many local businesses and can use these relationships to ensure you are listened to, understood, and supported as you become more independent from the Local Authority.

We are aware that a laptop and internet access is now essential for job hunting or attending some college courses, but not everyone has access to these. We have an agreement with our I.T. service to repurpose our unused County Council laptops, these are second-hand, but high specification laptops, with the ability to connect to the internet remotely, without the need for Wi-Fi.

We can only give one per young person, for use for Education, Employment or Training and reliant on having free stock. To see if you can get a laptop, please speak to your Personal Adviser or Social Worker.

Check with student services at your college or sixth form to see what financial help is available to you. This can include lunch vouchers, bus passes, 16-18 bursary, and help with childcare costs. You should not have to pay exam or enrolment fees for your first level 1 or level 2 qualifications. If you are being asked for money for your course, contact your social worker/personal adviser.

  • If you are in full-time education or training you will be eligible for the 16 -19 Bursary. For Cambridgeshire and Peterborough colleges we offer a unique extended bursary that supports care leavers in further education up to the age of 22. To find out more and to see if your college offers the extended bursary, please visit the Looked After Child/Care Leaver section of your college's website, or contact your college directly.
  • If you are in independent living or semi-independent accommodation, we will provide you with a stationery pack. You will get this pack at the start of each academic year.
  • To help you get to and from college, we can sometimes provide additional funding for a bicycle, helmet, lock, and lights in certain circumstances.
  • You may be eligible for educational transport. Please see more options for Post 16 Transportation
  • If you are caring for your own child or children and you are under 20, you could get help with childcare. The Care to Learn scheme can help you fund childcare while you are studying. If you are at college and your baby is due before the end of the course talk to your tutors.

The Council’s ‘Virtual School’ continues to support young people up to eighteen. Your Personal Adviser can also provide support and advice.

If you are on a course, you will have support from your college or sixth form tutor and/or a progress coach. (We offer training to providers of post-16 education so that they understand the best ways to support looked after children and care leavers.) Your progress is monitored through your Personal Education Plan (PEP). You will be able to say what you like, or don’t enjoy about your course. You will be involved in setting targets and making plans for the future.

  • If you are an unaccompanied asylum seeker, we will work closely with our local colleges to ensure you can access education appropriate to your literacy and numeracy levels. You will get help to apply for an appropriate course. Your Personal Adviser will explain your options, and how our education system works.

We can assist you in making sure you have the financial support in place to help you focus on your studies. This includes help to make sure you have the right student finance in place as well as any other bursaries or charitable funding you can access. This might vary depending on the university you choose.

All young people will be able to access £2000 Higher Education bursary. You can choose how this is paid over the programme of your course (for example termly or annually), to help you budget alongside your student finance.

If you need a little more help with costs, we will undertake an assessment with you which will include;

  • Accommodation
  • Activities essential for your course
  • Public transport costs between your student home and where you study if this is over 3 miles
  • Clothing that might be necessary for your course

Once you have paid your rent and utilities (gas, electric, water and internet) you should be left with a minimum weekly living allowance. This should be in line with the Universal Credit single person allowance. We don’t include your Higher Education bursary in this assessment.

This will be set out within your Pathway Plan. You will know how much financial assistance you will be receiving and how this will be paid, to help with your budgeting.

If you live in student accommodation and you have to leave over the summer period, we will provide financial assistance to you. This will be up to the Local Housing Allowance rate in the area you are staying for the summer break. If it is your final year, we will continue this payment for up to 5 weeks following the end of your course whilst you prepare to move on to your own place.

Useful Links;

Care Leaver Opportunities - Care Leaver Covenant (mycovenant.org.uk)

Children in care and care leavers booklet

Propel - Become (becomecharity.org.uk)

Student Finance

A Traineeship is a 12 week programme for 16-24 year olds. It combines the study of English and Maths with high quality work experience. It can lead on to an apprenticeship or full time employment. Specialist training providers or local colleges provide them. A traineeship is classed as 'further education' and you can get the same financial support.

See the Money matters page for information on personal allowances.

Care Leavers Internship Scheme

Please add Young people leaving care will again be directly offered the opportunity to work at central government departments, as applications today open for this year’s Care Leaver Internship Scheme

Wates/Ixion

Free Construction training for Care Leavers. You can gain the BTEC Level 1 Certificate in Construction, Asbestos Awareness, Manual Handling and a free test to secure a five-year Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card.

This allows you to work on construction sites. You can also get free training on job interview skills, CV writing, and a guaranteed job interview for all participants that complete the course.

Email Madeline Walsh making reference to Care Leaver status.

Know You More

Free access to virtual coaching courses for Care Leavers. Includes Employability skills, Personal Skills and Self-Confidence and Confident Life Transitions.

Visit Know You More to register for virtual coaching.

Turtle Dove Cambridge

We work with young women in Care or Care Experienced (15-23) to improve their confidence and strengthen their lives professionally and personally. Working to help women learn invaluable skills, or access education, employment or training or tackle mental health issues through community events and workshops.

Website: http://www.turtledovecambridge.com
Email: hello@turtledovecambridge.com
Phone: 07902 851151

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new jobs for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment. This will be paid 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months. Kickstart Scheme jobs are only available for Universal Credit claimants aged 16 to 24 who are referred by DWP. Please speak to your Jobcentre Plus Work Coach to find out what roles are available and how to access them.

Contact JobCentre Plus.

This is a great way to learn a job and get paid. If you follow this route you can get the £1,000 care leaver bursary for new apprentices.

  • We will do an assessment of your outgoings and may offer help towards your rent, council tax, equipment-related expenses. If taking an Apprenticeship means you are financially disadvantaged.
  • If your Apprenticeship is provided by a college you will still have Personal Education Plan (PEP) and/or Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) meetings to discuss your progress.

To find out more about apprenticeships visit Gov.uk apprenticeships guide.

  • If you are job hunting, let your Personal Adviser know and they will provide you with a job hunting pack. You may also be able to access face-to-face advice and support from the Education, Training and Employment Coordinator
  • If you have an interview for a job, let your Personal Adviser know. We may be able to help you with the costs for a haircut and interview clothing before the interview.
  • You may want to consider your own transport. Charities such as the Kickstart Moped Scheme help reduce the barriers of getting to and from work.
  • If you are starting work we will help you to access any help that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) provide. For example a clothing allowance or help with travel costs. If you need a DBS check to start your job we may fund this for you.
  • See the Money matters page for information on personal allowances

Reed

Guaranteed job interview, only for Care Leavers. When applying for an Internship at Reed Specialist Recruitment. Visit Reed Specialist Recruitment and to get a guaranteed interview, put 'carecov' in the referral box.

Evolve

Would you like to be a Mentor for young people in schools? Working to improve pupil behaviour, confidence, and emotional wellbeing. Salary between 15-16 thousand per year, depending on age, experience and prior qualifications. You can also get 37 days annual leave. Funded training only for Care Leavers. You will be fast tracked to the recruitment workshop. Visit the Evolve website to view current vacancies. If interested send a current copy of your CV to fast.track@evolvesi.com and mentioning 'Care Leaver' status.

Compass Group UK

Two weeks pre-employment training only for Care Leavers. Which includes:

  • accredited certificates in Customer Service Level 2
  • visits to established businesses
  • guaranteed interview to start a permanent position in hospitality at Canary Wharf.
  • Your travel expenses will be refunded, and you will get a lunch allowance on training days.

Please contact Shabbir Malik, Senior Employability Programme Manager. Email shabbirm@springboarduk.org.uk and refer to 'Care Leaver' status

Amazon

Guaranteed job interview and supported route into work. Get coaching for your job application and interview support. From both internal Amazon Team and the Care Leaver Covenant Team.Please email: careleavers@amazon.co.uk before starting an application to receive full support.

You may also be interested in volunteering opportunities. This can help you to develop your skills and confidence. Some of the opportunities may come with recognised qualifications.

If you are over 18 years old and claiming certain benefits you should use the Universal job match as part of your job hunting. Your Job Centre work coach will set you up with a log-in and show you how to apply for jobs through the site. We will liaise with the local Job Centres. So that they know you are a Care Leaver, and you get the right training and job opportunities.

The Princes Trust offers some great opportunities for 16-25 year olds looking to get into work. These include:

  • The 12 week Team personal development programme
  • 'Getting into courses' focused on a local job sector usually four to five weeks which includes a work experience element
  • ‘Get started’ courses usually based on a creative or sports activity - one week course.

If you are working and expecting a baby you have the right to time off to attend ante-natal appointments. You cannot be dismissed due to your pregnancy. You can choose when your maternity leave begins. Your employer will be expected to keep your job open for you to return after your maternity leave. Check our your rights on the Maternity Action website.