Children's rights

​​ If you have been or are in care, the council has a responsibility to make sure your rights are respected and you are treated fairly.

The children's rights team make sure you receive help and advice face to face, over the phone or by letter. They can attend meetings with you, or help you get legal advice and support when you make a complaint.

How Children's Rights support you

Find out about the support offered by Children's Rights and how you can get involved to help other children and young people in care.

​An advocate is like a messenger who speaks for you on your behalf. They can support you to ensure your views and feelings are heard when decisions are being made about your life.

Your advocate can support you to:

  • Ensure your views and feelings are heard when decisions are being made about your life
  • Make a complaint, give information and advice about rights and attend meetings, reviews and assessments with you
  • Talk to professionals if you feel a bit shy or unsure about what you want to say

Who can request an advocate?

If you have a Northamptonshire social worker or you are a care leaver, you can contact us to request an advocate.

Contact Children's Rights

To request an advocate contact us using the online form below:

Contact Children's Rights

The Children in Care Council is a chance for you to have a say about things that really matter and affect your life. Whether you live with a foster carer, in a children’s home or have recently left care, your ideas can make a big difference.

The Children in Care Council:

  • meets regularly to discuss ideas and plans
  • takes part in fun activities and events
  • works on projects such as websites, events, newsletters and activity organising

There are 2 possible age groups you can join:

  • Children in Care Council - 13-17
  • Leaving care council - 18-21 (or 25 if you still in education)

Do you want to join the Children in Care Council?

To join the Children in Care Council or find out more, complete this form:​

Join the Children in Care Council

​The participation service offers advice and activities for children and young people aged between 12 and 24. It also allows you to get involved with children’s rights.

What kind of things could you be involved with?

You can:

  • be on the interview panel for adults who want to work with children and young people
  • be part of a consultation or research group
  • help train social workers and others working with children and young people
  • be a member of the children in care council
  • be a member of the Shadow Board
  • take part in the making of training DVDs
  • help in the production of a Children's Rights newsletter
  • help to develop shared interest groups
  • take part in activities including whitewater rafting sessions and cinema trips

Want to get involved?

You can find out more about the participation service by contacting Children's Rights:

Contact Children's Rights

​An independent visitor is a volunteer who will spend time with just you on regular basis.

They are someone that you can talk to, get along with and ask for advice. You could even ask your independent visitor to support you in your review.

Before you start to see your independent visitor, we will make sure they are good, safe people. We try to find someone who has lots in common with you such as hobbies and interests.

Who can have an independent visitor?

All young people in care have the right to an independent visitor.

Contact Children's Rights

To request an independent visitor contact us using the online form below:

Contact Children's Rights

​Shooting Stars are a group of young people with additional needs who represent other young people in Northamptonshire.

What do we do?

  • Discuss young people’s issues and services for young people with additional needs
  • Make sure only the right adults are chosen to work with us
  • Support training
  • Make sure locations such as shopping centres, places to visit and leisure centres in the county are accessible and safe

These issues are fed back to help improve the services provided to you. It's a great way to learn new skills, meet lots of different people as well as being good fun.

For more information about how to get involved with the Shooting Stars group, please get in touch with us.

Get involved

Our pledge to young people in care and care leavers was set up in conjunction with the Children in Care Council.

We will:

  • Always keep you informed and updated
  • Let you know who you can contact, for example when you don’t have a social worker or it’s out of hours
  • Provide support for you to stay in touch with your family and friends
  • Support you with your next steps, particularly with independent living skills and getting ready to be an adult
  • Provide you with a sense of stability, belonging and safety
  • Help you with your health needs, particularly your mental health
  • Help to guide you through your education
  • Make sure all professionals working with you will be professional, positive, organised and truthful
  • Listen to your views
  • Give the right support to those of you who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, questioning or intersex (LGBTQI)
  • Review this Pledge every year with you and will consider residential activity
  • Support you with your hobbies, new experiences and leisure activities

The Care Leavers' Charter

The Care Leavers’ Charter sets out a list of promises for central and local government to make to young people moving out of care and into adulthood. It is agreed each year by councils.

Contact Children's Rights

To request an advocate or independent visitor or to find out more about joining a group, contact us using the online form below:

Contact Children's Rights

Tell us what you think

Complete the online form below if you want to:

  • give us feedback
  • tell us you are unhappy with something 
  • tell us about something you think we could do better

Give feedback

Children and young people's complaints procedure

The children and young people's complaints procedure gives details of the arrangements for the complaints process. You have the right to request an advocate who will help you through the complaints process.

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