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Support for children in our care

How we support children in our care in Derbyshire.

Every child or young person in our care has to have their care arrangements reviewed regularly and independently by law.

This is to make sure that their care plans are being followed and the child's wishes and feelings are being taken into account.

The independent reviewing officer for your care will help you have your say. They'll also help you contact an advocate if you're unhappy about your care.


Every child or young person in our care will be consulted about contact with their birth parents or extended family.

The court may stipulate what this contact should be. Independent reviewing officers will regularly look at contact with family of the child as part of their review.

Coming into care booklet

A booklet designed for children and young people in Derbyshire to help answer some of your questions about being 'looked after' and provide you with details of people you can contact is attached to this page. If you would like this in a printed booklet, ask your social worker or carer and we can provide this.

Virtual School

The Virtual School is a team of educational professionals working alongside schools and settings to ensure we all provide the best education provision for children and young people in Derbyshire's care. We are a local authority service and work closely with our social care colleagues to emphasise the importance of education and training in young people's lives.

Children and young people will remain on the roll of the school or setting they attend, with the Virtual School offering support, guidance and training. We ensure that schools and educational services are effectively informed and co-ordinate excellent support for children and young people in care. We are committed to our children getting the best opportunities to reach their fullest potential.

For more information please email:

Children's rights service

We provide lots of ways for children in care to have your say, our aim is to ensure that you have the information that you need to make decisions and to let people know your views and feelings. You can contact us by email or tel: 01629 532029.

Children in Care Council and participation

If you're 'in care' you could join the Children in Care Council which gives you a place to have your say and help yourself and other children and young people in care. For more information, email

Independent advocacy

If you're a vulnerable child or young person you can have an ‘independent advocate’. This is someone who'll work with you to represent your views to decision makers and, if you need it, help you to make complaints. An advocate will come and meet you where is best for you and at a time that suits you.

Advocacy aims to help and support children and young people to ensure their views are heard when decisions are being made.

Independent visitors for children in care

If you're a child or young person in care or leaving care you can ask for an independent visitor.

An independent visitor is an adult volunteer who befriends and develops a long-term friendship with you. This can involve helping you find new interests, skills and hobbies or going on outings such as to the cinema, bowling or just a walk in the park. You can choose activities to do together and try new opportunities.

The volunteers are called 'independent visitors' because they are a truly 'independent' person who will come and visit you for as long as you both want to. They are not paid and come because they really want to help you and become a trusted friend and buddy.

Each volunteer is carefully matched with you. This service is only available to children in care or care leavers.

If you would like to request an independent visitor your social worker or carer can make a referral for you or you can do this yourself.

For more information email