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Funding granted to continue Staying Close

The Department for Education has awarded St Christopher’s funding to continue Staying Close, a project to help young people maintain relationships with people they care about after they leave residential care.

Staying Close is a pilot under the DfE’s Innovation Programme, which encourages new models of practice within children’s social care. Launching in 2017, the project has continued to evolve thanks to co-production with children and young people.

Aims for 2022-23

  • Deliver training in the Staying Close model to the London Boroughs of Ealing, Camden and Wandsworth.
  • Restore and widen the strategic partnership group to include Ealing, Camden, Wandsworth, Sandwell, Walsall and Dudley. Young people to chair at least two of the groups each year.
  • Explore accommodation element expansion with Wandsworth and seek to develop joint funding applications.
  • Develop local Staying Close models with Sandwell, Walsall and Dudley, and seek to develop joint funding applications.
  • Strengthen data collection using dedicated Data Management post within St Christopher’s.

The funding received so far will cover this next year; we are currently awaiting the outcome of an additional application that will extend the funding period.

Chief Executive Jonathan Whalley said: “We are thrilled to continue our important Staying Close work, helping care leavers build life skills, reduce isolation and sustain relationships.”