Until you are 18, children's social services must arrange for your financial support to help you pay for the things you need to live on (for example for food, clothing, travel, hobbies and for your accommodation). They have to make sure that you are not any worse off than if you were on benefits. Once you are 18, if not in employment or full-time education, you can claim benefits. However, your local authority should continue to give you financial help (for example towards the costs of your education and training), if that is what they have agreed to do. In order that children's social services keep to their promises, they should make sure that all agreed support is written into your Pathway Plan.
In the Bristol 'Local Offer for Care Leavers' , Bristol Local Authority states that they will try to help you financially and work with you while you're a care leaver to help you manage your money. This will include a range of practical and financial support and access to your savings.
You can apply for up to 100% relief from council tax until your 25th birthday if you remain living in Bristol.
We will suppot you to open a bank account and give you information on accessing your Junior ISA or Child Trust Fund.
If you are in crisis and have no money for food or electricity we may be able to help with emergency payments.
We wil support you to gain important identity documents such as a a passport and/or driving licence.
We will support you to get your National Insurance number.
We will give you a finanacial gift at birthdays and Christmas, or ther celebrations.
Also in Bristol City Council's Pledge the Council promises to give you the pratical, financial and emotional support you may need to progress to further or higher education. Also there is a promise to make sure you have a bank account and all identification documents before you leave care. There is emphasis on providing you with financial support to set up a home.
If you have a problem in regard to debt, arrears with housing, or financial problems with an employer you can contact a really useful service in Bristol called 'Ask Us' they give a range of advice on a number of issues for any young person up to the age of 25. They can also help with general housing issues, homelessnes, employment, discrimination, welfare benefits and support needs. Below is a link to their website.