A few years ago I used to be one of Liverpool City Council's Regulation 33 visitors. It's something Councillors can choose to do and involves monthly unannounced visits to children's homes. All elected members are "Corporate Parents" so it's part of that role.
I had to stop doing the visits for a while, but had been thinking about taking part again.
Well, yesterday was a training session for new, or existing, Reg 33 visitors so I went along.
The enthusiasm and dedication of the staff just shone through. We were also joined by a young man who had lived at one of the children's homes and now was a youth worker. It was good too to hear about the standards in the service. The City Council's homes have extremely high standards and everyone seems to pull together to keep it so.
We talked a bit about changes in the law too. It looks like the government is about to change the law so that children in foster placements can in fact stay there (funded) for a few extra years rather than leave before they are ready. This sounds like an excellent idea so let's hope the cash is there to make it possible.