The Pledge is a list of promises that we make to all children and young people in care in Devon.
We listened to our care-experienced young people to understand what was important to them. Working together, we created a list of the top 15 priorities, and these are what the Pledge is based on.
You can find the Pledge in full below a video that highlights some of the very top priorities. And remember: if you have any questions, you can always ask your workers and carers about the Pledge and what it means for you!
The Pledge Promises
1. We will not do anything that will make you stand out as a child in care, this means we won’t ‘out’ you, or take you out of lessons. Instead we will make sure we know who you are happy telling about your situation.
2. If it is not possible to give you a choice, we will be honest with you and explain why in full.
3. We will respect your property; we will never move your things without consent, or in bin bags.
4. We will make sure you have the opportunity to go on a yearly holiday. This might be with carers, family or school. It may be abroad, or in the UK for a few days or a week.
5. We will make sure that all social workers understand legislation, processes and entitlements so that you’re given clear, consistent messages.
6. We will make sure there is always someone for you to contact, if you need someone to talk to, this includes evenings and weekends.
7. We will celebrate your 18th birthday with you and ensure it is a positive milestone in your life. This means we will not burden you or worry about you having to move home as soon as you turn 18 and will talk to you about how we can support you in celebrating your 18th.
8. We will provide you with opportunities to build your confidence so that you are able to make your own decisions about your safety.
9. We will provide you with clear information about staying over friends and where necessary we will work with you to create an agreement that keeps everyone safe.
10. We will involve you in decisions about where you live and make sure you are given a choice about where you live and who you live with. We will record the choices offered to you and what you say about them.
11. When we leave you to intervene over your safety, we will make sure our actions are explained to you in full and made clear.
12. We will make sure that changes in where you live have little impact on the rest of your life e.g. not moving schools or away from friends, or social worker.
13. We will make sure that you are told about any changes to where you live, at least a week before these changes will happen; this could include moving placement, or changes in who lives with you.
14. We will make sure that you are treated fairly and equally within your foster families so that you feel at home and like you are part of the family. This means we won’t accept you being given separate food, or not having equal access to rooms in the house.
15. We will involve you in regular review meetings and any other meetings related to your care. We will make sure that your thoughts and feelings are recorded at these meetings and that you are offered help expressing these, especially if you have a disability or find it hard to speak up.