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Children in Care

Volume 455: debated on Wednesday 10 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment he has made of the merits of the provision of support for children in care through (a) peer support and (b) mentors; and what steps he is taking to promote these forms of support. (110336)

Mentoring for children in care features in a number of local authority programmes and voluntary sector initiatives and there is anecdotal evidence of its potential benefits. In recognition of this the Department is providing up to £1.5 million for the development and evaluation of an adult mentoring programme for 600 looked-after children aged between 10 and 15, to be delivered through the voluntary and community sector. In addition, peer mentoring is a feature of a three-year DfES-funded pilot project led by the School Home Support Service UK, which is designed to support children in care who are making the transition from primary to secondary school.