Where a child cannot be looked after at home, they should benefit from the sort of care and support that any child is entitled to expect. There are currently over 70,000 looked after children nationally; we have high ambitions for these children, just as ambitious as those that good parents have for their own children. The annual cost of caring for all children in care is around £4 billion per year, with about £1 billion spent on residential care provision. It is critical that this substantial investment results in children receiving the best possible care for the money spent, as well as delivering value for money for the taxpayer.
Innovation Programme projects are developing, implementing and testing new approaches to the commissioning of residential care to ensure quality and stable placements, with positive experiences and outcomes for looked after children.