An event designed to raise the ambitions of children in the care system has been held in Bradford.

Children aged from eight to 16 years attended the Aspirations evening at Bradford College, which was run in conjunction with Bradford Council’s Department of Children’s Services.

The youngsters took part in a series of activities intended to get them enthused and excited about the possibilities of continuing their education beyond school – be that at college or university.

The children, and their carers, learned about the vast range of courses, both vocational and academic, that can be studied at further and higher education level. They also took part in a number workshops covering topics such as the difference between a job and a career and the issues around an individual’s social media presence. Each young person wrote down the career they hoped to have and posted it on an ‘aspirations tree’.

It is hoped the Aspirations evening, which was held for the first time 12 months ago, will now be an annual date in the diary for look-after children in the district.

Rita Kumar from Bradford Council said:

“We have high expectations for looked-after children in Bradford. We want all our young people to achieve the best possible education that they can and encourage them to aspire to further and higher education; this is the key to their future adult lives. 

“It is important for young people to consider education beyond Year 11 and the range of both academic and vocational opportunities at college locally to enable completion of education post 16.

“It is also essential that we empower carers to have informed dialogues with the young people in their care when making education and potential career choices.”

Charlotte Cooper-Nairn, Student Engagement and Outreach Team Leader at Bradford College, said:

“Bradford College is dedicated to making further and higher education accessible for as many people as possible, regardless of background or circumstances.

“The event was a fun way to engage with young people, and their carers, and hopefully break down some barriers and inspire them to think positively about their future and make informed choices.”

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