A successful transition to adult care and support needs the young person, their families and professionals to work together with the young person at the centre of discussions. Legislation gives local authorities a legal responsibility to co-operate, and to ensure that all the correct people work together to get the transition right for a young person.
We know that the transition to adulthood is a time when young people and their families are thinking about their aspirations for the future. Some young people, like people with a learning disability or autistic people may need lifelong support which starts in childhood, so support may need to be provided by adult social care and health after the age of 18. If young people are likely to have care and support needs when they are 18, they will need information and advice so that they can make the necessary plans.
This means that timely plans need to be made by health and social care staff for the transfer of their support and care from children to adult services so that this transition can be smooth and stress free for the young person and their family. Any continuing needs for care and support, education beyond 18, plans for employment, housing and health needs may need to be considered.
Reasonable adjustments may need to be made to ensure that the young person can fully participate in the process. Staff will also need to consider whether they need an advocate.
We have collected resources below to help council staff involved in supporting the young person through transition.
Relevant case studies are listed below.
- The Preparing for Adulthood programme provides expertise and support to local authorities and their partners to embed preparing for adulthood from the earliest years.
- LGA work on improving transition from children and young people’s to adult mental health services summary
- Great Manchester Preparing for adulthood network
- Yorkshire and Humber preparation of adulthood resources
- Ten years on from the Autism Act: local governments role in meeting the needs of autistic adults and children
- Mencap Transition into adult services
- NDTI preparing for Adulthood
- Council for Disabled Children into adulthood
- SCIE Preparing for adulthood: The role of social workers
Relevant legislation/government guidance and research
- SEND: 19- to 25-year-olds’ entitlement to EHC plans
- Care Act guidance
- Transition for children to adult social care act fact sheet
- Bridging the Gap: transitional safeguarding and the role of social work with adults
- Social work and autistic young people: an exploratory study
- Preparing learners with high needs for adult life