The NSW Government has introduced a new payment to foster, relative and kinship carers to help young people in out of home care complete secondary education after they turn 18.
Minister for Family and Community Services Brad Hazzard and Minister for Education Adrian Piccoli announced the new payment - the Post Care Education Support Allowance - as part of Foster Care Week, which began on Sunday.
“Access to a quality education is important for every young person to succeed in life, “I want to see young people in out of home care getting the same opportunities and support as young people in the wider community,” Mr Hazzard said.
“A big part of this is providing stability - this policy means for the first time all young people living in out of home care will be supported to continue living with their carer so they can complete their secondary studies after they turn 18.”
Minister Piccoli welcomed the initiative saying the new payments will help ensure stability for students in their final years of high school.
“The HSC can be a challenging milestone for any student but it can be particularly tough for those in out of home care,” Mr Piccoli said.
“Offering stability as these students transition from school to work or higher education is essential to supporting these young people reach their full potential.”
Principal of Merrylands High School Lila Mularczyk said she was heartened by the initiative.
“Many young people in care need longer to complete their schooling than their peers and often experience fewer opportunities to go on to higher education and employment,” Ms Mularczyk.
“I am really heartened to see these young people, who have often faced many difficulties, getting much-needed support to help them reach their potential.”
For further information go to www.facs.nsw.gov.au/postcarefinancialsupport<http://www.facs.nsw.gov.au/postcarefinancialsupport>