CLNM update - Jan 2023
Posted 20th January 2023
Over the last six months CLNM have continued to work closely with NHP to develop the approach, improve the offer and support the charity’s growth. These activities have also enabled young people to have experiences they would not have otherwise had and enabled them to grow both personally and professionally. Here is a summary of some of their work.
CLNM worked together throughout the year to deliver a young person’s event in Care Leavers week. In October last year CLNM planned and delivered a conference with a focus on ‘Sharing Success’. The event brought together young people, colleagues, and partners to celebrate the success of individual young people, the House Project community and wider care leaving services.
CLNM invited guests to speak alongside them throughout the day. The presentations included a range of inputs
- How NHP, CLNM and their partners are working together to provide Aspirational Awards to young people in House Projects.
- The challenges care leavers are facing during the cost-of-living crisis and what NHP and their partners are doing to tackle these challenges. Jodie, a CLNM rep from Islington LHP, spoke passionately about this.
- A panel discussion focussing on the importance of meaningful relationship. The panel was chaired by Josh, a rep from East Dunbartonshire LHP. Saeed Atcha MBE, Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester and former Social Mobility Commissioner joined Josh for the panel discussion and said of the day itself:
“All of the young people involved should be incredibly proud of themselves for seeing this conference from design through to delivery. What a fantastic injection of hope yesterday was. In my speech, I said that the country's success is dependent on the success of its young people and the young people who participated yesterday definitely showed that the future is in safe hands.”
CLNM did a fantastic job of designing and delivering a conference that showed, with the right support, care experienced young people can achieve great things. CLNM are working hard to change the narrative that sits around care leavers to ensure that positive stories are told and heard. You can see this positivity in CLNM’s short video here.
Enabling new staff to understand the House Project approach
In December CLNM supported the design and delivery of the three day ‘Introduction to the House Project’ training event. Katie, Abby, Daz, Paris, Byron, and Shawna supported NHP staff in exploring the centrality of coproduction and why this is so important, the ORCHIDS practice framework and helped new staff get off to a brilliant start. Young people were present and actively involved in all 3 days and were great ambassadors for CLNM. NHP involve young people in all aspects of their work and new staff were able to see coproduction in action.
Young people from CLNM complete a peer evaluation of all LHPs every 2 years. The recommendations inform the development of the House Project approach to ensure that it remains focused on the needs of young people and is led by what is important to them.
Recommendation 4 from the last evaluation was:
More peer support between House Projects and cohorts: To build on the sense of community, graduates from previous cohorts should be empowered and supported to support younger members, through informal conversations or mentoring. Many young people support each other with the responsibilities they have, but the NHP should build on this and create a system where young people are empowered to support each other across House Projects.
With support from NHP and Partnership 4 Young London, CLNM have developed an AQA/SQA certificated peer mentoring training package. Over the last few months, they have been involved in training young people who have graduated from the House Project and are living in their own homes, as peer mentors. This training will be delivered on a regular basis to graduates who wish to become mentors and will equip them with the skills to support new young people in the first 6 weeks of their House Project journey.
Katie was part of the evaluation team in 2021 and said:
"I learnt so much as part of our last peer evaluation, from interview techniques to what unconscious bias meant. I'm excited to watch others learn these things and see them grow as peer researchers"
The next evaluation will take place in 2023.
Senses of Home
Over the last 12 months, 10 young people from CLNM have been working with The Madlug Innovation Academy to design and set up a social enterprise. Their social enterprise took shape during a business trip to Northern Ireland in the summer where the brand Senses of Home was born.
“Senses of Home is a new social enterprise created by care experienced young people to help other young people leave care with dignity.”
Senses of Home was launched on 9th December 2022 in Hyde, Manchester and was a huge success. The team’s mission was to earn enough profit to provide 10 young people moving into their own homes with a set of good quality bed linen. The team smashed this target and are looking forward to conversations about how the transferable business skills they have learnt can be put to good use in the future.
Members of CLNM all have lived experience of care and leaving care. CLNM are increasingly using this experience to not only develop the House Project approach but to support external organisations and partners to develop their approach and consider how they design services which will impact on the lives of care experienced people. Some of the organisations CLNM have consulted with over the past 6 months are listed below:
MyBnk - Supporting research into the financial literacy of care leavers.
University of East Anglia - Supporting research into the potential effectiveness of adolescent focussed low intensity life story work.
Centrepoint - Supporting research into the challenges care leavers face with social housing.
You can find out more about CLNM’s consultation service here.
What's happening now?
As CLNM start a new year they will welcome representatives from all 16 LHPs, including the first representatives from Lancashire, West Sussex, Trafford, Stockport, Tameside, Bury, Rochdale and Oldham. The North regional meeting will be hosted by Fife House Project and the South by Islington House Project.
All reps have a signed contracts and commit to working towards the CLNM vision:
CLNM’s vision is to have a platform that authentically engages young people in developing care leaving services. By empowering and supporting care leavers within House Projects to positively challenge and influence leaving care services on a local and national level, CLNM can improve outcomes for young people leaving care across the country.
We are looking forward to continuing our work in 2023 and making a positive difference to the lives of care experienced young people.
Since my last blog in July, CLNM have hosted their Annual Conference in October and with a focus of Celebrating Success this event undoubtedly delivered on this agenda. Designed and hosted by young people it was an event that demonstrated that with the right support care leavers can achieve and are incredible.Read more