Reboot West: a new programme offering a brighter future for care leavers in the West


1625 Independent People (1625ip) and North Somerset Council have announced a new partnership aimed at kick-starting the journeys into learning and employment of 200 young people leaving care in the West.

The new initiative, Reboot West, will support young people to access work experience, jobs, apprenticeships and mentoring, and is calling on businesses across the South West to get involved.

Reboot West is a partnership between 1625ip, four local authorities – Bath & North East Somerset Council; Bristol City Council; North Somerset Council; and South Gloucestershire Council – and social investor Bridges Fund Management (Bridges).

Funding for the programme has been secured by 1625 Independent People and will use social investment to support care leavers to achieve their potential. Bridges will fund delivery of the new project and then receive payments through the Department for Education’s Children’s Social Care Innovation programme based on the results achieved by the project.

The programme has been developed, co-designed and co-ordinated by 1625 Independent People (1625ip) with support from the four local authorities and Bridges. It will help young people leaving care in the West to lead successful, independent lives.

Care leavers will be given support to progress into education and jobs alongside access to safe, stable homes, trusting relationships and a range of practical and emotional help to develop personally.

Young people and businesses will be actively engaged in shaping the project so that opportunities are created that meet the needs and aspirations of both young people and employers.

Combating the sense of isolation care leavers often report when leaving care will also be a key aim of the project. By making sure they have the right emotional and practical support in place and by testing new approaches that engage the whole community in finding solutions, the project will seek to remove the negative impacts this feeling can have.

The project will also engage all sectors of the community, including businesses, in tackling the inequalities, disadvantage and discrimination that care leavers can face as they transition into adulthood.

North Somerset Council’s Assistant Director for Children’s Support and Safeguarding, Eifion Price, said: “In North Somerset we take our responsibilities to care leavers very seriously and have been at the forefront regionally and nationally in developing innovative and much needed services for this important group of young people.

“We are very pleased to enter into this partnership to help more young people into employment and training.”

Dom Wood, CEO of 1625ip said: “We know that given the right opportunities and support every young person can succeed. We are delighted by the support that the Department for Education has announced. We are now keener than ever to hear from employers across all sectors, including businesses, who are interested in offering opportunities for our care leavers.

“Young people leaving care bring a vast range of skills, and we know that when they are offered the right opportunities, alongside the emotional and practical support that this project will offer, they can thrive and be a fantastic asset to businesses, public services, charities, colleges and universities.

“We are delighted to be part of the Department of Education’s new initiative and we hope that with the right opportunities in place, we will see a new future emerge for our care leavers.””

If you are interested in finding out more about Reboot West, and how your business can get involved, please contact Tim Wye, Programme Manager, by emailing tim.wye@1625ip.co.uk.