After care support

young people

‘After care’ is a term used to describe a variety of services and supports that may be available to young people between the ages of 15 and 25 years after they formally leave care.

Community Services will discuss with you the kinds of after care support you would like, and will recommend services based on your wishes and an assessment of your individual circumstances.

Like other young people who have left their family homes, if you have been in care you need ongoing support to help you adjust to independent living.

Community Services is not only responsible for you while you're in care, but also for developing ‘leaving care’ or ‘after care’ plans.

If you have questions about leaving care, contact your caseworker or the FACS Careleaver’s Line on 1800 994 686 or email CareleaversLine@facs.nsw.gov.au.

Types of after care assistance

Types of after care assistance might include:

  • information and advice about other government or non-government agencies which can help with family searching, family mediation and family reunion services
  • referral and financial assistance for finding accommodation, education or vocational training, counselling, employment, legal advice, health services or professional services. NB: To be eligible for financial assistance, you must be over 15 years of age at the time of leaving care
  • help with viewing your file and accessing personal documentation.

Transition to Independent Living Allowance (TILA) – new procedures

TILA is a one-off payment of up to $1,500 per person to help young people get the best possible start when leaving statutory out-of-home care.

It is provided by the Australian Government to support the leaving care plans of young people aged 15–25 years.

TILA helps you achieve your care plan goals by providing you with money to put towards such things as rent, education or training, life skills or health.

Your caseworker will apply for TILA on your behalf. You must have a leaving care plan in place in order to claim TILA.

For more information about claiming TILA, contact your caseworker or the agency that is managing, or has managed, your out-of-home care placement. You can also contact an after care service on the contact numbers at the bottom of this page.

The TILA application form must be completed in partnership with your caseworker.

The Australian Government’s TILA website is www.dss.gov.au/tila.

Specialist after care services

In certain situations, Community Services can provide specialist services to help you live independently, find accommodation, obtain income support, get education and training, develop living skills and help you with health related needs.

Community Services can also provide casework support including advice, advocacy and referral.

Other after care resources

Community Services funds a number of non-government organisations to provide assistance to people who have been in care such as Relationships Australia, Burnside, Centacare, St Vincents Adolescent Care, Stretch-a-Family and Wesley Dalmar Youth Services.

These services provide:

  • counselling, support and assistance for young people leaving care or who have left care
  • support in finding employment, health care, legal advice and education
  • assistance with access to personal history information
  • information and advice about financial assistance
  • advocacy on behalf of young people.

Find information about your family or background

If you have been separated from your family due to your time in care, Community Services can help you find out about family members. See are you a former ward? for a guide on how to access information.

Family tracing services are also available to help you contact family members who have been separated in out-of-home care. .

Support services for people who have left care

Anglicare (Careforce) Child and Family Services: 02 9890 6800

Barnardos Australia: 02 9281 7933

Burnside Aftercare Servies: 02 9630 6866

Care Leavers of Australia Network (CLAN) is a support group for people over 25 who were in orphanages, children’s homes or foster care: 02 9709 4520 or 1800 008 774 (toll free)

CatholicCare: 02 8700 3333

Relationships Australia - Aftercare services

Wesley Dalmar Child and Family Care – Aftercare services: 02 9804 7255

Related Links

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To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (24 hours/7 days)