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Bright Futures: getting the best for 30 years

2019 marks the 30th anniversary of two ground-breaking commitments to put children and young people’s rights at the centre of policy-making; the Children Act 1989 and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). These key events made sure that their voices are heard, their safety guaranteed and their freedoms protected.

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This principal has helped shape children’s services into what they are today. Looking back, we celebrate thirty years of lives being immeasurably improved and the role children’s services and children’s social care play in all children’s lives. Most people think these services exist only to keep children safe. Of course, that’s a vital part of what they do but that’s just a part of how much support they give and how ambitious councils are for children’s futures.

Despite the enormous efforts of social workers, foster carers, residential care workers, youth workers, safeguarding partners, early help practitioners and countless others, things could be better. That’s why, in 2017, we published ‘Bright Futures: Getting the best for children, young people and families’, our seven-point plan for coordinated action. 

Our plan has seen wide-ranging success, from additional funding for children’s services, especially for innovation, to an enhanced sector-led improvement offer. Ofsted ratings for children’s services have seen a marked progress, and the profile of children’s social care has been raised significantly up the political agenda.

This new plan builds on Bright Futures’ successes and focusses our efforts for the coming year.