There are plenty of ways to have your say if you're one of Barnsley's children or young people in care.
The Care4Us council meets four times a year and is supported by a participation worker and targeted youth services.
All its members are children and young people who are in, or have been in, care.
You too can be part of the council. It gives you a chance to meet the director of children’s services, local councillors, and service managers to talk about things that are important to you and to other children and young people living in care.
Ask Rachel gives you a chance to ask Rachel Dickinson, the director of children’s services, questions about living in care, the services you receive, or anything really.
The youth council is a group of young people, aged 12 to 19, who live in Barnsley. These young people are elected by their peers every two years to represent the views of all young people living in the borough, at a local, regional and national level.
Two members of the youth council are also elected to represent Barnsley on the United Kingdom Youth Parliament. They attend regional meetings and national events, including an annual debate in the House of Commons.
There aren't any children in care on the youth council, but the chair person of the Care4us council regularly feeds into the youth council and United Kingdom Youth Parliament. The Care4us council chose not to have a direct representative sit on the council, preferring to feed in on a needs basis.
The 32 youth council members are elected to represent the school or college that they attend and also the area in which they live.
The full youth council meets monthly at the O Zone. Members also attend monthly meetings in their local areas to gain the views of young people who live there.
The youth councillors work closely with us and other services and agencies in Barnsley to make sure that young people have a say in decisions that affect their lives.
When you come into care, you have a right to be consulted about what happens to you.
This doesn’t mean that you’ll always get what you want, but we’ll take what you have to say seriously.
The Children’s Rights Service is run by the Youth Service and provides advocates for all children and young people in care.
Advocates are people who’ll listen to you and help you get your point across if you feel people aren’t listening to you, if you’re unhappy with any decisions made about you, or if you just want something to change. They’ll also support you if you need to make a complaint.
If you have to attend a children’s hearing or go to court, you also have a right to be represented independently.
Here's what you can expect from us
We'll look after you in a safe and caring home
We'll promote, support and respect your identity
We'll ensure you receive a good education
We'll support you to be healthy
We'll prepare you for the future
We'll involve you in making it happen