Reviewing the unregulated supported accommodation industry

Young people need more than a house when they leave care; they deserve unwavering support, guidance, and advocacy to help them reach their true potential. Below, we explore the unregulated nature of supported accommodation, showing how Bold Leap is elevating the standards for all.

Supported accommodation is an important safety net for care leavers. Without it, they would be left to navigate independence without the support and guidance that all young people need and deserve.

Due to the largely unregulated nature of the industry, there are a growing number of young people who are being placed in houses, but not receiving a sufficient level of support. These companies are providing housing, not supported accommodation, and this is negatively affecting our most vulnerable youth.

Unregulated: A recent report by the Children’s Commissioner of England

In September 2020, the Children’s Commissioner of England, Anne Longfield, released a report called ‘Unregulated: Children in care living in semi-independent accommodation’. Using the latest statistics and real-life experiences of young people in supported accommodation, Longfield uncovered alarming problems across the system.

The Bold Leap team have extensive experience in the supported accommodation sector and want to ensure that every young person receives tailored quality care. We know that this starts with the companies who provide supported accommodation, and the standards and procedures they adhere to.

What is unregulated accommodation?

Unregulated accommodation is a bridge between foster care and independent living. Also referred to as ‘supported accommodation’ or ‘semi-independent living’, it is a funded incentive that provides young care leavers with housing and support.

Local authorities are responsible for paying for supported accommodation. In the Children’s Commissioner’s report, she revealed great discrepancies in fees local councils are paying for supported accommodation. 73% of the industry is privately run and fees reportedly ranged between £1700 and £9000 per week. This significant discrepancy shows the lack of consistency that exists in the supported accommodation industry.

What impact is this having on young care leavers?

The support that young people need during their transition to adulthood extends beyond accessing a house. It is vital that they learn life skills, access education, and are connected to their local community. This holistic support is what allows young people to develop independence and is the foundation of Bold Leap’s service.

The Children’s Commissioner has reported that care leavers across England have experienced negative events in semi-independent accommodation settings. Poor quality homes and apathetic, unqualified staff have been the main problems. This impacts the young person’s confidence and does not allow them to access the support they need to launch a bright future.

How is Bold Leap different?

At Bold Leap, we are redefining and revolutionising supported accommodation. Despite the lack of regulation, we adhere to high standards to ensure that every young person in our care has access to quality accommodation and support staff.

Learn more about our holistic approach to supported accommodation or contact us today.