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Information sharing is helping one forward-thinking local authority support young people leaving care.

East Ayrshire Council is working closely with Skills Development Scotland to ensure information sharing is at the heart of its provision in this area. Ian Burgoyne, Senior Manager (Opportunities for All) explains: "The Data-Hub is proving a very effective tool in helping us track and monitor the transition and progression of care leavers in East Ayrshire."

Like most Local Authorities, different services use different information management systems. We use the Data-Hub as our primary source of destination information and, working closely with colleagues from social services, economic development and Skills Development Scotland, ensure that all appropriate information is shared amongst the respective partners.

Ian Burgoyne

Ian adds: "We have found the Data-Hub to be up-to-date and accurate, and its use in our monitoring and tracking group helps to inform planning on who in the care leavers' cohort requires additional support, signposting or a direct intervention."

Ian is keen to develop use of information sharing beyond its successful implementation for care leavers.

He explains: "We hope to extend it to enhance our support for school leavers in the 'looked after' cohort plus young carers and leavers with additional support needs.

"One of the key concerns for a local authority is to avoid duplication - if you are doing the same thing as someone else, that is not an effective use of resources. We hope lessons learned from the group and our continued use of shared information will help minimise duplication."

Ian adds: "It has been very successful. The group meets once every three to four weeks, not to discuss data, but to discuss young people, and the support we can give them either individually or in partnership with agencies like Skills Development Scotland. These discussions are further enhanced due to the available data."

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