Aftercare is a process of preparation and support for leaving care and moving to independent living for all those young people who are or have been in the care of the State. [1]    It is the provision of advice, guidance and assistance with regard to social and emotional support, accommodation and vocational support.  It is a through-care process, in consultation with the young person, beginning from reception into care and includes comprehensive assessments, care plans and reviews.[2]

In the absence of a supportive family network, those leaving care experience more acutely the transition to independent living.  An effective aftercare policy strengthens the position of a young person leaving care, supports their transition to independent living and reduces the likelihood of homelessness, and social exclusion on leaving care.

[1] There is no standard definition of aftercare.

[2] Youth Homelessness Strategy Monitoring Committee

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