County Council wins award for supporting care-leaver parents - The Rugby Observer

County Council wins award for supporting care-leaver parents

Rugby Editorial 15th Nov, 2020   0

WARWICKSHIRE County Council (WCC) has won a national award for a project to support new and expectant parents who are care leavers.

The National Leaving Care Bench Marking Forum (NLCBMF) has announced Warwickshire as joint winners of the Best Project Award.

The Baby Box Project, led by care-experienced employees and apprentices at the council, launched earlier this year. It was set up to provide useful supplies to help care-experienced young people who have recently become parents.

Boxes include essential items such as nappies, wipes, new-born clothes, thermometers, bibs, towels and other necessities.

The project also provides the young parents with financial support to help them buy items such as a cot, buggy or car seat.

To further support care leavers, the project has a Young Parents Forum that is led by young people to raise awareness of the service and to discuss issues that are important to young parents.

The project, along with other support during the Covid-19 pandemic, has supported numerous young people.  A young person who received a baby box during lockdown said: “I love all of it, it’s so useful. I am very grateful and appreciative of the gesture.”

The team at the council brought the project together and promoted Warwickshire’s role as Corporate Parents, and now Corporate Grandparents, for care experienced young people in Warwickshire.

Liss Phillips, a Family Support Worker at WCC and a young, care-experienced mum who led on the project said: “This year has been difficult for so many people, including care-experienced young people in Warwickshire.

“During lockdown earlier this year, we noticed that there was a big need for young, care-experienced parents to have additional support as sometimes this is something that they don’t get as much of when going through the care system.

“We are so proud to have received recognition for our baby boxes. We want to support young parents who have been in care that may benefit from a baby box with essential supplies for their new-born.

“Our baby boxes have been so meaningful to the young people who have received them. It’s not just about the boxes, but the support for care leavers that comes with them and the reassurance to them that we are here for them and we care.”

WCC Family Support Worker Umar Teerab, a care leaver and previously an Unaccompanied Asylum Seeker, also won an award from the NLCBMF for Champion of the Year 2020 for his contribution to supporting other young care leavers.

Umar said: “I am over the moon to win an award and I am proud to represent Warwickshire County Council. Thank you to all of the staff at WCC who have supported me along the way.”

WCC children’s services spokesman Coun Jeff Morgan said: “I am so proud of Liss, Umar and the rest of the Children and Families service. A lot of hard work has gone into winning these awards and collectively everyone has made such a difference to so many young people in Warwickshire.

“We put children and families at the heart of everything we do so I am delighted that this has been recognised nationally. The dedication and passion of our staff are some of the key factors in the success in what is a very competitive application process.

“Both Liss and Umar are incredible examples that with the right care and support, young people can leave care and go on to achieve amazing things.”

The NLCBMF brings together over 100 local authorities to promote the development of quality leaving care services through shared learning and to enrich the outcomes for care leavers across the country.

Warwickshire’s Baby Box Project jointly won the Best Project Award alongside Brent and Leicestershire.

Visit for more information on the National Leaving Care Benchmarking Forum.

Visit for more information on leaving care in Warwickshire.


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