This resource outlines the feedback from the ‘Influencing Work to raise the profile, reach and quality of IV’ workshop at the Celebrating the Relationship of an IV Conference 2019.
Workshop participants came up with the following opportunities and challenges:
- Make better use of the IV standards.
- The Regulation 44 list should include IV awareness and offers.
- Collate evidence to show the impact on outcomes for young people.
- Make the service statutory for care leavers.
- Guidance is produced to support services to open up IV access to all children wishing ot have an IV, on the basis of DofE ‘Best interest criteria’.
- A lack of awareness of IV services.
- Limited funding and investment.
- Recruiting volunteers.
- IVs for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities need more specialised training and support
- There are no consequences for those LAs who do not offer a statutory service.
Who did participants identify as key stakeholders at both local and national level and how did they think we can work with them?
- There was general agreement that key stakeholders are LA commissioners, Local Councillors, Association of Directors of Children’s Services, Ofsted, Offices of Children’s Commissioner and the Department of Education.
- NIVN members felt Ofsted would have the biggest impact on service development and delivery.
- Ofsted are not consistently looking at IV provision during inspections and do not always inspect against IV requirements.
- If Ofsted were to inspect IV services this could put pressure on services that do not commission a ‘statutory’ IV service.
- Ofsted reports can lead to ambitious improvement plans.
The National Independent Visitor Data Report 2019
The Report also had some key recommendations around influencing key stakeholders.
- Work with the NIVN to increase inspectors’ understanding of the statutory entitlement of young people to an IV and the duty of LAs to provide this service
- Work with the NIVN Development Project to increase inspectors’ understanding of the role and value of the IV service and ensure it is assessed with reference to the National IV standards.
The Department for Education
- Work with the NIVN to raise the profile, reach and quality of independent visitor services and ensure that all children in care who need and want them have access to an IV, as proposed in ‘Care Matters: Transforming the Lives of Children and Young People in Care (2006)’
- Work with the NIVN to review offer to care leavers, as recommended in the 2015 Data Report and ‘Keep on Caring: Supporting Young People from Care to Independence. (HM Government, July 2016)’
Office of the Children’s Commissioner
1. Work with the NIVN to raise the profile, reach and quality of independent visitor services and ensure local authorities carry out their statutory duties and secure children’s rights to an Independent Visitor.