Growing up in Northumberland

Growing Up in Northumberland

Young people with special education needs and/or disability growing up in Northumberland can now access advice and guidance to help them get prepared for the next stage in their lives.  

From around the age of 14, young people, with their families, peers and teachers start to talk about what they may want to do when they ‘grow up’, and it is around this age that they’ll start to plan for those next steps.

Northumberland County Council in partnership with Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group and Northumbria Healthcare Trust have pulled together a ‘Growing Up in Northumberland’ booklet to help support those decisions, and help young people, their families and carers consider all the things they need to think about and all the avenues they can take.

In consultation with 100 children and young people in years 9 to 12 and a number of parents the booklet has been developed to incorporate a variety of key areas such as independence, friendships and relationships, education and training, money, getting around and support available.

Councillor Guy Renner-Thompson, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Children’s Services, said: “As a local authority we have a commitment to ensure all Education Health Care Plans reviewed in year 9 and beyond include a focus on preparation for adulthood and this booklet supports that commitment.

“Making that next step towards adulthood can seem a scary thought for someone aged just 14, but this booklet, we hope, will help ease those anxieties and opens up a forum for discussion around independent living and employment opportunities. The team have done a great job in producing this, and to see that so many of our young people have been involved in its creation is fantastic.”

Whilst the ‘Growing Up in Northumberland’ booklet has been created with young people with special educational needs in mind, it can be beneficial for all those in year 9 – 12 as they too begin those vital conversations.

Kate O’Brien, senior head of commissioning for child health, learning disabilities and mental health at NHS Northumberland CCG, said: “We know how important it is to support our young people through every stage of their lives. This booklet will hopefully help them to navigate through some of the difficult decisions they will need to make such as, where to go to college, how to budget and manage finances as well as staying healthy and having an active social life. This has been made with input from our very own young people in Northumberland so that it gets right to what matters to them as they transition into young adults.”

The booklet can be accessed online here or via the Local Offer.
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