Your corporate parenting pledge - video transcript

[Title slide "Corporate Parenting"

Caroline: Welcome everybody, I'm Caroline Smith, I'm the Assistant Director for Corporate Parenting and I'm here today to talk to you about how as a KCC member of staff you can become involved with corporate parenting. So what is a corporate parent? It's our responsibility as KCC members of staff, our elected members and partnership agencies, and our responsibility towards our children and young people that are in the care of the local authority. And we want you to become involved in that role as a corporate parent and make offers to improve the lives for our children and young people and I'm here today with Sophia to talk to you about what a difference it is when the corporate parents become involved and the support that we can offer.

Sophia: Ok, so I'm Sophia Dunstan and I'm a care leaver myself. I started as an apprentice in 2012 with Virtual School Kent and now I'm a Participation Support Assistant employed full time by KCC. So my role is basically to organise and facilitate 3 children in care councils, that's our chance to get our young people's voices heard and also so they can voice their views and opinions about what they do and don't like about the care they're receiving in Kent. Part of our role also is to be the link between our young people and the children in care council so that means we report back from our council meetings with the young people and feedback to the corporate parents about what they say, so can make really good changes and they have done lots of really good work in Kent. Also, we get to challenge on young people's behalf our corporate parents as well and that's really, really key because it shows young people that we are there for them, as our corporate parents are and what the best outcomes for all children in care in Kent.

Caroline: It's so important for us to have that voice of the young people when we're developing our services and trying to improve opportunities for children. So Sophia and I are responsible for over 1,500 children and 1,500 care leavers that are in our care and we want you to become involved in that role as their corporate parent. So what can you and your teams do? Well what we're asking for today, is for you to make pledges on our KNet page of support that you could offer and that might be mentoring, work experience opportunities, or the opportunity to have an apprenticeship within your team or department in the way that Sophia has through the Virtual School Kent, and Sophia it's not just Virtual School Kent or Children and Families that we're asking this for, it's all our departments.

Sophia: Yeah so it could by Highways, it could be the Comms Team, it could be even catering in Sessions House, it could be the Legal Team, anything in KCC, because it's really important that as corporate parents we champion the best interests and needs for young people and quite a lot of young people as they get to a certain age don't know what they want to do in life and really it's for us to encourage them and get them thinking outside the box and really set their goals on the right path and get them involved, get them a career and basically just so they can become the best adults they can be.

Caroline: So please come forward today, think creatively about what you could offer, it might be an activity day or one-off event that we could support you with that you could put on for our children and young people, or it might be more of an ongoing commitment, that apprenticeship role, that work experience, but please come forward today, join our corporate parenting family and really have a part in improving the lives of our children and young people in care in Kent.

[Title slide "Search for corporate parenting on KNet now. Make your pledge and join our corporate parenting family."]