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Craven District Council

Advice for Care Leavers

Housing advice for care leavers.

I am leaving care soon and would like to know what support I am entitled to from the Council as a care leaver?

Craven District Council works in partnership with North Yorkshire County Council to deliver advice and housing for young people and care leavers through the Young Person’s Pathway.

Your social worker should make a referral to the young person’s HUB before you are due to leave care. You will meet with a young person’s worker who will talk through the options available and assess you for supported housing if this is an option that you want to consider.

We aim to find you a housing solution before you have to leave care so that you do not become homeless. 

Available Housing Options

Supported lodgings

Supported Lodgings provides accommodation with a host family for up to 2 years. You get your own room, breakfast and an evening meal daily and in return pay rent and make a contribution towards bills.

You are supported to develop independent living skills, such as budgeting and basic cooking, and encouraged to continue or begin education or employment.

For more information and some case studies of young people who have live in supported lodgings visit the SASH website.

Supported accommodation

This is provided by Foundation Housing. They offer different services and varying levels of support depending on your assessed needs.

Supported housing is available for young people with medium or high needs, either at Cross Street which is staffed 24 hours a day or an independent flat in the Craven district.

Residents are expected to take a part in a programme of support to develop their independent living skills and are expected to move on after approximately 6 - 9 months.

Private renting

Once you turn 18, you can hold a tenancy in your own name. Under the age of 18 you would need a trustee which would usually be the local authority that looked after you.

Different options will be available for renting in the private sector, including:

  • shared housing or lodgings
  • Self-contained accommodation in the private rented sector

Floating support can be provided by Horton Housing if needed to help you get settled into your tenancy and help with any problems.

Look for private rented on websites such as Right Move, and Spare Room.  

Social Housing

You can make an application to the Council’s housing register North Yorkshire Home Choice.

If you are aged under 18 you can only make an application if your social worker confirms that you are ready for independent living and have a support package in place.

You will receive priority on the waiting list whilst you are still in your care placement but there is no guarantee that you will receive an offer before you have to leave care.  

Help with Housing Costs 

If you are receiving benefits or on a low income, you are likely to be entitled to financial assistance towards your rent. In Craven this will be paid through Universal Credit or Housing Benefit if you are in supported housing. 

If you are under 18, your rent will usually be paid by the local authority that is looking after you. 

If you are looking to rent a private rented property, the maximum amount of help you can get is set by the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). As a care leaver you will qualify for a self-contained one-bedroom property rate until your 22nd birthday.

Check the LHA rate on Craven Council’s website https://www.cravendc.gov.uk/benefits-andadvice/local-housing-allowance/ 

What if I become homeless? 

If you are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless then you need to contact your social worker or leaving care worker for some advice, and then contact the Craven Housing Options team on 01756 706475. Additional information regarding homeless applications can be found under the Homeless Application section on our website.

Care leavers aged under 22, are an automatic priority need under the homeless legislation and are entitled to temporary accommodation from the Council. 

The Council will usually only accept a homeless duty to people who have a local connection. As a care leaver you can have a local connection to either 

  1. the area of the local authority that looked after you OR
  2. an area different to the local authority that owes you a leaving care duty provided that you lived there for at least 2 years including some time before you were aged 16. 

You should discuss this with your social worker.

Help available from other agencies:  

Access Towards Inclusion (Craven College) 

ATI provides keyworker support for individuals (over 18) who are unemployed or economically inactive. Direct support is offered to help participants to progress into job-search, education, training and employment. For further information regarding the ATI programme please visit the website

www.craven-college.ac.uk/the-college/projects/action-towards-inclusion/ 

Richmond Fellowship.  

They are a charity who work with young people in supported housing to help build confidence, develop skills and access education, employment and training. Referral is through the Young Persons Pathway only. 

Springboard

Springboard Foundation has been developed to help young people leaving care and care leavers reach their full potential. Project Workers provide support and training to help you achieve their personal goals. 

www.foundationuk.org/success-stories/springboard-foundation-care-leaver-project/