There are 70,440 children looked after by a carer who isn’t their parent.

Around half have difficulties with their emotional or behavioral health, having experienced the trauma of neglect or abuse in many cases. 

Applications to find new homes for children - whether that's foster care, adoption or residential care - are rising every month and available places for these vulnerable children are insufficient. While foster care or a residential home can give a child a really safe, positive place to recover and grow, not all children can be found the most suitable type of placement for them because of a shortage of spaces in residential homes and foster families. 

There is also a shortage of social workers who are so crucial in supporting these children through traumatic experiences and into safe, stable relationships and families. Without the right setting and the right support, a child's new placement can break down and they can suffer further instability.

Our member Become has the full facts about the care system, and children and young people's experience of it.

Manifesto demand: skilled workforce for looked after children Manifesto demand: better data on children in care and their needs Manifesto demand: support to 21 for looked after children