This week is Care Experienced Week and we thought we would take this opportunity to explain what Care Experienced means and how it relates to our intandem mentoring programme, in partnership with Inspiring Scotland. 

Our Intandem mentoring programme offers 1:1 mentoring once a week to children aged 8 – 14 involved in the care system, living at home (under a compulsory supervision order) or with extended family (known as kinship care).


With the right support, all children and young people can thrive and communities are strengthened. Our vision at Befriend a Child is that all young people who are in care or on the edge of care have the resilience and confidence to succeed in life, and we hope that with the support of a mentor, they develop positive wellbeing and resilience, giving them the foundation they need to build strong relationships in the future and overcome trauma experienced in the past.   


What is Care Experienced?

Care experienced is an umbrella term which can mean children/young people who are:

• Looked after at home through a Compulsory Supervision Order (CSO)

• Looked after away from home in a residential children’s house, in a foster placement or in a kinship placement

• Previously looked after, where at some point in their lives they have had any of the above experiences


What’s a CSO?

A CSO is a Compulsory Supervision Order. A child or young person becomes looked after at home when the Children’s Hearings system decides that a Compulsory Supervision Order is necessary.

In practice, when a child becomes looked after at home their parents must work with the ‘implementation authority’ – the local authority. The parents will receive regular visits from social workers to ensure that the objectives of the Compulsory Supervision Order are being met.


What’s Kinship care?

Kinship care is when a child is cared for by their extended family or close friends if they cannot remain with their birth parents.

A kinship carer is defined as “a person who is related to the child (through blood, marriage or civil partnership) or a person with whom the child has a pre-existing relationship”.