Our Voice, Our Choice - Hackney launches commitment to looked-after children

The Hackney Pledge to Looked-after Children and Young People, which sets out seven key commitments that will ensure the Council offers a truly child-centred service in the borough, was launched at a special event earlier this month.

The Pledge was drawn up through close consultation with over 100 Hackney children and young people in care, as well as their foster carers, council staff and social workers. It gives a clear vision of how children, young people and staff want to see services develop.

Hackney’s ‘Our Voice, Our Choice’ (OVOC) Children in Care Council, comprising young people who are currently in care, or have experienced the care system, will play a critical role in developing the new work and systems promoting the Pledge, including reviewing, monitoring and evaluating action plans.

Ismael Zakari, 17, a member of the OVOC Council, says the publication of the commitment is a starting point for an ongoing conversation between children, young people and professionals about how best to assess and improve outcomes for Looked-after Children: “It’s been a privilege to be part of the development of the Pledge, but what we have done so far is only a beginning; the real task lies ahead, in ensuring positive outcomes are delivered.”

Councillor Rita Krishna, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “This Pledge provides a meaningful commitment that reflects the views of children and young people in Hackney, and how we will work together to develop services that will help them to realise their full potential. It also exemplifies our efforts to continue prioritising the safety of Hackney’s most vulnerable children and young people, and I am pleased they’re able to play an important role in its development as well as the ongoing work.”

The Pledge was successfully launched at a celebratory event on 3 June, attended by many of those involved in drawing it up.

For more information about the OVOC Children in Care Council, visit: