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NNECL News Issue 10 - the quarterly newsletter from the National Network for the Education of Care Leavers
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Strategic Group Update


Welcome to our NNECL Newsletter. So much has happened since our last communication, both locally and nationally; in our day to day work as well as the ways in which our work is shaping nationally.  The range of challenges that we are addressing together makes very clear the value of our community, which allows us to share expertise and experience and to develop collaborative, regional and national, activities and resources together. Once again, that spirit of co-operation and mutual support characterised our annual conference and made it a very useful and cheering day at which many ideas were discussed and examples of wonderful work were shared.

This collaborative spirit that characterises NNECL is especially valuable at times like this, when we are facing unprecedented change.  For example, many of us are working more than we ever have with young refugees, asylum seekers and economic migrants from many different communities and we are having to adapt our work and our systems to ensure that these young people receive the support that most suits their needs.

At a national level, Arron, myself and colleagues from your Strategic Group are working together to do our best to ensure that what we have achieved in the past year – our NNECL web site; the management support that we have had from our host university colleagues – can be sustained and built upon in the future.

Our reach is expanding, it has been exciting to support the development of the new Central Region set up in 2015 by the Study Higher partnership, which was an existing collaboration between Bucks New University, Oxford Brookes University, University of Oxford and University of Reading. Rachel has pulled together details of all of our Regional Networks which can found in the About section of our website.

With in NNECL we are preparing to wish Rachel Lad, Outreach Manager a fond farewell as she leaves it (albeit short-term) on Maternity Leave. Sarah-Louise Collins has taken up the unenviable task of filling Rachel's shoes and we wish her every success and support in her new role.  Sarah will be in touch to introduce herself in the coming weeks.

It is always the case, with the work that we do, that we must adapt and change to suit new circumstances, but it is so much easier and more fruitful to be able to do it together with colleagues who bring their individual commitment, knowledge and experience to our collaboration.

With good wishes to everyone
 
Felicity Dunworth and Arron Pile
Chairs, NNECL

In this edition read articles about what NNECL has been up to:
Welcome Sarah-Louise
NNECL Webinar
Save the Date - NNECL Conference 2016
NNECL.org

Sector News:
Care Leaver Health Project
Sign up for UCAS News Updates
OFFA Topic Briefing 'Estranged Students' and Stand Alone's Times Higher blog
NIACE Inspire Me App to Support Care Leavers

 
Sign up to future newsletters
Welcome Sarah-Louise
We are thrilled to welcome Sarah-Louise Collins to the NNECL team, who will be covering as National Collaborative Outreach Manager, when Rachel goes on Maternity Leave at the end of March. Sarah joins us from University of Winchester's Widening Participation team where she has been co-ordinating their 'WINdow on HE' programme and has been key to developing their Children in Care Spring Summer School. We look forward to working with Sarah in the coming months, Sarah's email address is
sarah-louise.collins@winchester.ac.uk.

NNECL Webinar

Supporting Care Leavers in HE - 16th June
This webinar is aimed at staff supporting children in care and care leavers in their school, college or local authority. The session will provide an overview of the tailored support which many higher education institutions provide to those in care to support them to succeed during their studies.  The session will include examples of good practice in higher education institutions in England and guidance for advisors on how to signpost young people to these services.

The webinar is free to participate in online - all you need is a computer with internet access and some speakers.

This webinar is part of a programme of FREE webinars coordinated and delivered by networks of universities in the south and south west of England, funded by the National Networks for Collaborative Outreach (NNCO) scheme - www.hefce.ac.uk/sas/nnco.

Book online here

SAVE THE DATE
NNECL Conference 2016


We are delighted to confirm that University of West of England will be hosting the NNECL Conference on Tuesday 29th November 2016.

Our 2015 conference in December was our most ambitious yet, it was attended by over 180 delegates from HEIs, local authorities and charities, and received some fantastic feedback. To see what you missed, or to remind yourself, the presentations are all available to download here on our website.

We look forward to going bigger and better on 29th November, so put it in your diaries now.

NNECL.org

The NNECL Single Point of Contact service was launched by NNECL at UCL, Institute of Education with guest speakers Lord Listowel and Matthew Blood from the National Virtual Schools Heads Steering Group. The launch took place on 3rd December with over 60 guests from universities, national charities and local authorities across England in attendance.

So far 122 events have featured on the NNECL website (www.nnecl.org) since the site went live last summer. Activities include summer schools, taster days and campus visits, mentoring support and conferences for practitioners.   Over 50 universities from across England as well as a number of NNCO regional networks and national charities have promoted their events on the website to date.    Thank you to everyone who has supported the site so far.   The resource page has also grown and includes links to a wide range of guides, websites and research giving high quality information relating to HE access for looked-after children and care leavers. 
 
The site is regularly updated so please remember to visit the website on a regular basis to access the latest information.  If you have an event, resource or news item you would like adding to the website, please get in touch.

We're now on Twitter! Follow us at @_NNECL

Sector News

Care Leaver Health Project

The Care Leavers' Association, a national user-led charity supporting care leavers, has been awarded funding by the Department of Health to work with local Clinical Commissioning Groups to help improve health outcomes for care leavers. The basis of the project will be to take the experiences and views of care leavers about what issues have affected their health - looking at things that helped and those that didn’t. We will use this information to co-produce resources for commissioners and service providers that will attempt to improve services.

Read more...

OFFA Topic Briefing 'Estranged Students' and Stand Alone's Times Higher blog

In January OFFA published their new topic briefing 'Estranged Students'. The briefing gives a broad definition of 'estrangement' and some background research on the characteristics of estranged students. OFFA will in the future be looking for more evidence from higher education institutions on how they support this cohort of students and the briefing gives examples of what some universities are already providing for them.

Read more...

Your regional representatives

NEW! Central Region - Trudy Ing
North East - Megan Lunn
North West - Arron Pile/ Phil Bakstad
Yorkshire and Humber - Ruth Lomas
West Midlands - Kirsty Dorward/Baljit Gill
East Midlands - Kay Bridger/Melissa Page
East of England - Lee Byrne
South West England - Di Stone
South East England - Felicity Dunworth
London - Priya Clarke

Sign up for UCAS News Updates

An exciting new feature has just gone live on ucas.com: the ability for all advisers to sign up to receive regular updates on the info they are interested in. In the past advisers could only receive updates if they were attached to a UCAS registered centre, but now UCAS is inviting anyone supporting applicants to sign up to updates. This enables UCAS to operate more flexibly and means that advisers will receive information based on their preferences.

 Advisers can access the sign-up form here.

NIACE Inspire Me App to Support Care Leavers

The Inspire Me! App developed by NIACE is designed by care leavers, for care leavers - Inspire Me! is a new and interactive app that enables former care leavers who are now living independently and learning or working, to share their positive stories and reflect on their experiences. Users can upload their own stories and build up a bank of their favourites for future reference and inspiration.

It's been around for a little while but we think it still needs shouting about and sharing so please tell your contacts about this valuable resource. The app is available for free download on all devices from the app store and iTunes. It can also be accessed online.

Share your event on NNECL.org.

Share your event on NNECL.org
With the website live we are keen to get your events, resources and information up on-line.  We are in touch with the regional SPoC networks to request information but If you have anything coming up that you would like to promote, please complete the online forms on www.nnecl.org  If you have any questions, please get in touch with Sarah-Louise Collins, National Collaborative Outreach Manager,  info@nnecl.org.
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