Innovative venture to improve Somerset young people’s lives

Somerset County Council is leading the way and joining forces with new strategic partner ‘Homes2Inpsire’ in working differently to secure new homes for looked after children and young people.

Following an extremely competitive procurement process, Somerset has secured Homes2Inspire, part of Shaw Trust – one of the UK’s largest charitable social enterprises – as its strategic partner.

Together Somerset County Council and Homes2Inspire will deliver children’s homes, foster homes and therapeutic education for some of our county’s children and young people whose adverse childhood experiences and trauma require more in-depth help and support.

This innovative 10-year partnership marks a new way of working together to change the experiences of children and young people. It will give them opportunities to have brighter futures, enable them to become independent adults, positive members of our community and help them raise their ambitions.  

Young people were actively involved in selecting Homes2Inspire and will be engaged in helping to support the development of new children’s homes.  Developing homes with the children and young people who live in them is fundamental to this new approach.

Members of the Somerset In Care Council and Somerset Leaving Care Council (SICC & SLCC) said: “As young people with a lived experience of In Care services, we value the opportunity to be involved and have a say. We feel it is positive that young people like ourselves have some power and belonging within the decision-making process. We are excited about Homes2Inspire, the home we visited was outstanding and hope that same quality will come to Somerset.”

The partnership will bring employment to the social care sector and the combined workforce will create a great place to work, learn together and share knowledge to create the trusted relationships that these young people need.

Chris Luck, CEO of the Shaw Trust said: “We are excited to be working with Somerset County Council in this new innovative partnership approach to developing integrated services for the children and young people of Somerset. Our mission is to ensure our work will have a positive transformational effect on their lives, building on the charitable values and strategy of ‘child to career’ believing everyone deserves to have a bright future and achieve their aspirations.”

Cllr David Fothergill, Leader of Somerset County Council said: “We’re delighted to announce Homes2Inspire as our new partner. We’re excited to be working together to totally re-think the way we support and improve the lives of our most complex looked after children.”

Cllr Frances Nicholson, Lead Member for Children’s Services said: “This innovative partnership will improve the lives of Somerset young people who have complex mental health, emotional and social issues. Not only will it give them a better, more stable home environment, but it will improve their health, wellbeing, skills and life chances. We’re really looking forward to working with Homes2Inspire in taking this new way of working forward.”

To find out more about becoming a Somerset foster carer, please check out, follow @fostersomerset or contact 0800 587 9900.