All the Children’s Commissioner’s work is driven by what children told us is important to them
I turn 25 in January. It’s a birthday that many non-care experienced people often look forward to. It’s the middle of your 20s. But for care experienced people it’s often a day they are anxious for. It’s the age at which your “corporate parents” no longer legally have to support you. The age in which every single bungee rope for that cliff edge gets removed and you are left to challenge and climb down that cliff edge all on your own.
However, many care experienced people don’t get to 25 before this happens. It can happen at 18, 21 or in my case at 24 a month after finishing University. I got a lot of support from my local authority while at university and I’d be lying if I said this support didn’t help me. But, that support I did get I needed as I finished my studies, moved house, and entered into the world of being a graduate. I was nervous and I needed that little extra support as I found my feet, who doesn’t at 24. But a month after finishing I got a text saying “I have been advised that as you have finished university that the support will cease and I need to close your case” I cried as I read that text. The support I’ve had since I was 9 years old, gone in a single text that would have taken 15 seconds to type out.
If I didn’t have the support system I have in place with my loved ones and so many care experienced people, I would have struggled and fallen into such a negative headspace and life. I’m lucky I have such loving and caring people around me who have become my family and taken over the role that my corporate parents never should have left. It’s because of them I look forward to turning 25 and all of the ages to come.