The development of a new scheme to improve the life skills of care leavers and vulnerable young people will be discussed at Thurrock Council's Corporate Parenting committee next week (Tuesday 6 December).
A report asks the committee to comment on a trial-run of the scheme – called 'Head Start' – and give support to the ongoing development of the programme so more opportunities can be made available.
Cllr James Halden, Portfolio Holder for Education and Health said: "We have recognised the need to help our young people in relation to housing whilst they continue to access support through the council's Inspire Youth Hub.
"Some of that work is already proving successful – last year the council launched its first house in multiple occupation (HMO) offering accommodation for up to two years to those who are receiving support from Inspire, with employment education and training.
"In addition to the supported housing options, the report also discussed targeted council tax exemptions to enhance the package of support available to these young adults."
Cllr Sue Little, Portfolio Holder for Social Care, said: "Ensuring young people are safe is obviously an essential part of the process of selection for the Head Start Housing programme. The selection processes for application is undertaken jointly between Inspire and Housing.
"Our teams meet regularly with the tenants meaning progress is reviewed regularly, addressing any and all safeguarding concerns quickly and mitigation of risks associated with young people living together."
Once the report has been heard at corporate parenting, it will be considered at Children's Overview and Scrutiny Committee.
To be eligible for accommodation, tenants will:
- be aged between 18 and 25 years-old
- priority is given to young people who are in care of engaging in some form of education employment or training opportunity
- provide two references – one employment, one character from someone other a relative
- have no criminal record for violence including sexual offences, arson, fraud or any drug related offences
- agree to enter into a formal agreement with conditions for accessing training, personalised support and involvement in community activities