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Care leavers

Who Are Care Leavers?

The broad definition of a care leaver (as described by the Care Leavers Association) is “Any adult who spent time in care as a child (i.e. under the age of 18). Such care could be in foster care, residential care (mainly children’s homes), or other arrangements outside the immediate or extended family. The care could have been provided directly by the state (mainly through local authority social services departments) or by the voluntary or private sector (e.g. Barnardo’s, The Children’s Society and many others). It can range from as little as a few months to as long as one’s whole childhood (18 years). It also includes a wide range of accommodation. For example, secure units, approved schools, industrial schools and other institutions that have a more punitive element than mainstream foster or residential care. This care would have been approved by the state through a court order or on a voluntary basis.”

Why Care Leavers May Need More Support at University

Entering university can be a daunting experience for any student. If you are care experienced and do not necessarily have the common support structures at home to help you, this can add additional pressure.  

If you let us know you are a care leaver we can offer assistance to support you through your time at university.  This includes providing guidance, additional financial aid, emotional support, and a range of other things in between.

If you discloses on your UCAS or university application form that you are a care leaver then resources can be put in place early, even before you begin your course. 

You may find that you don’t think you need any support at first but if things change and you find you are struggling with your studies then you should not hesitate to go along to your local student services team who will be able to help with a range of issues.

The university is committed to providing all our students with a positive experience whilst they are studying with us and to offering the support and opportunities that help them fulfil their potential.


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