The Children's Society in Rochdale
Programme manager: Circle Steele
For almost 30 years we've had a vision of joined-up support for children, young people and families in the Rochdale area and local community, with specialist help for those who need it most.
Our project opened as a family centre in 1983, and our work has developed to reflect local and national needs. Our main area of work is Rochdale Children's Rights Service.
Please read our newsletters:
Rochdale Children’s Rights Service
We support looked-after young people aged 7-19 years old and young people who have a social worker supporting them and their family. By providing advocates for the young people, we help make sure that young people’s voices are heard by their local authority, and they have a say in their future.
We are completely independent from the Rochdale local authority, and we:
- support young people at reviews (What are review meetings and how can they affect you?)
- help young people talk to their social worker and/or carer about what they want for their future
- help young people with any serious issues they may have with their care
Our staff and volunteers
Our staff includes one full-time advocacy worker and one part-time advocacy worker and a part-time independent volunteer coordinator who also does some advocacy work. (Learn more about our advocacy work.)
We and numerous children rely on independent volunteers. Please read our overview of how you can become an independent volunteer.
Young people can learn more about what an independent volunteer can do for them by clicking on this link.
To speak to someone about becoming an independent volunteer, please contact us at 01706 345600.
Refer a young person to the Children's Rights Service
To see that a young person has the opportunity to work with us, please complete the relevant form.
For practitioners or adults:
Young people can refer themselves for advocacy.
Listen Up Group - Children in Care Council
Who are we?
We are a group of young people aged 7+ who are looked after who come together to share our ideas.
What do we do?
The Listen Up Group meets at least every month to look at how we can work with The Children’s Society to make things work better for us and other children and young people in care. We are a children and young people’s participation group. That means that we help guide and steer the Children’s Rights Service in Rochdale. It’s our ideas and feedback that develop the service provided. We get lots out of being part of the group.
We learn about children’s rights and responsibilities, team working and skills. We look at ideas and the things that happen to make sure we all get our rights met, so that we can tell our carers and Rochdale how they can make things better for us. We can even get ASDAN awards (for learning and skills) and references by doing the things we do. Its lots of fun being part of the group and it’s really good when we know we have made things change. Sometimes things work ok but sometimes things could go better. We try and make sure our voices are heard and that The Listen Up Group SPEAKS OUT and asks for POSITIVE CHANGE.
We can get involved in lots of other groups and activities too. For example members of our group are on the planning team of the Looked After Children Awards, CROA and have taken part in national conferences as well.
If you would like to know more about it or come to one of our meetings you can:
•Give us a ring on 01706 345 600 or freephone 0800 0720 6383 and we’ll send you the details.
•Read this information leaflet
If you would like to join our group please fill out this application form
Listen Up recently met to produce a piece of art work that represented their views and feelings. With the support of graphic facilitation experts Deadcatdreaming the group produced this wonderful piece of art below.
The artwork has raised a lot of media and public interest and the Art Board will be displayed at the ‘Greenbelt’ festival in August 2013.
Please read the report on this piece of work which explains the process and what the picture means.
Help for young people with rights and entitlements
There are agencies that can help children and young people in care and care-leavers, including:
The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) offers first-hand experiences, and information on topics such as health, education, changing placements, keeping in touch, identity, and moving to independence.
Children's Rights Director can help young people living away from home. This website can help them learn about their rights and ways to be heard.
Young Heritage Detectives
Learn about our research project by young refugees and asylum seekers aged
10-19 years of African and Asian heritage.
‘Highly Commended Award’
Young Heritage Detective Project has received ‘Highly Commended Award’ in the Empowerment Awards 2012, under the category of ‘Developing Community Voice’, going up against over 70 other nominations from within the North West region.
Please read our latest Annual Report.