As many as two thirds of care leavers with mental health issues are not receiving any help, a charity has claimed.
Research from Barnardo’s suggests that out of the 26,340 care leavers in England, nearly half may be suffering from mental health problems. In a recently published report, the charity also claims that as many as one in four have dealt with a “mental health crisis” since they left the care system.
The report, titled Neglected Minds, also revealed that many people who work with care leavers do not fully understand mental health and do not know how to properly support young people with such problems.
Neglected Minds also details cases where care leavers were unable to access any kind of support despite incidents of self-harm or suicide attempts.
The government has previously promised to spend £1.4 billion on improving children’s mental health. Barnardo’s has asked that some of this money be used to support care leavers who are particularly vulnerable.
Chief Executive Javed Khan said the report painted “a shocking picture of care leavers in need with no access to suitable mental health support”. Problems these young people face can range “from anxiety to serious problems following abuse or neglect” he continued, demanding that the government ensure they “receive the support they so desperately need when it honours its pledge to improve children’s mental health”.
Read the Neglected Minds report here.