- There are over 80,000 children and young people in care in England – nearly a quarter of these are aged 16+ and this percentage is rising each year.
- There is an urgent need for high quality, age-appropriate provision for older teenagers in the care system.
- Supported lodgings offers a cost-efficient way to provide older teenagers with more independence while providing relational support and teaching key life skills.
- A new Savanta ComRes survey has found that 25% of UK adults would consider becoming a supported lodgings host (rising to nearly 50% among regular churchgoers).
In an outdated care system unable to meet the increasing demands on it, supported lodgings can offer a financially viable and supportive environment for older teenagers to flourish and to learn key life skills.
That is the key message in a major new report published today by fostering and adoption charity Home for Good entitled Brimming with Potential: The case for supported lodgings.
Brimming with Potential: The case for supported lodgings draws on research conducted over the last two years, including interviews with local authorities, practitioners, young people who have been in supported lodgings placements, and supported lodgings hosts across England, research on the current use and cost of supported lodgings, and a Savanta ComRes survey exploring public attitudes and awareness of supported lodgings. The latter, conducted among 2000 UK adults, found that 69% had never heard of supported lodgings, but that 25% would consider becoming a supported lodgings host (this rose to 49% among regular churchgoers). Those aged 18-34 were most likely to consider becoming a supported lodgings host – as being a supported lodgings host involves less responsibility and fewer hours of support than fostering, Home for Good believe that supported lodgings is able to draw in a new cohort of people, for whom adoption and fostering might not be possible or suitable.