‘Staying Close’: Enabling Social Interdependence for Young People Leaving Residential Care in England

Dan Allen


Applying social interdependence theory as a framework for document analysis, this paper considers eight evaluations of an extended care scheme in England known as ‘Staying Close’. Findings suggest that for extended care projects like ‘Staying Close’ to work, any service offer designed to support the transition from residential care to independent living must be seen by the young person, the carer, and the wider social network, as a continuation of earlier efforts to build and nurture a genuinely committed relationship.

A new interrelations model for extended care is introduced and implications are discussed for strategic responses that enable young people, their carers and wider social network to promote opportunities for social interdependence.