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New approaches to commissioning children’s residential care - Alumni online workshop

6th October 2022

IPC Commissioning course Alumni workshop

“How we find, match, build and run homes for children in care, both foster homes and residential children’s homes, is broken.” Josh McAllister, Independent Review of Children’s Social Care Final Report.

“The UK has sleepwalked into a dysfunctional children’s social care market.” Andrea Coscelli, Chief Executive of the Competition and Markets authority.

Care markets for children’s social care are under severe pressure and increasing scrutiny. The number of children placed in distant and sometimes inappropriate placements has been increasing and there are concerns about quality and profiteering. The Welsh Government intends to remove private profit from children’s care altogether by the end of the decade and the UK Government commissioned the Competition and Markets Authority's market study across England, Scotland and Wales, which was published in March. Many councils are already revisiting the need for dedicated local residential provision, either in-house or through new partnerships. Come and hear about the trends driving innovation and examples of how commissioners are innovating to provide the children’s residential care of the future.

John Wilkinson, Associate Consultant for IPC, alongside guest speakers Liz Perfect (Head of Strategic Partnerships, Barnardo's) and Wendy Williams (Assistant Director for Integrated Children and Families Commissioning, Gloucestershire County Council) will consider the current national context and challenges for children residential care, and provide overviews of example innovative practice happening in this field to tackle such challenges.


This workshop is free to Alumni who have passed an IPC Commissioning Course. See booking details below.

This workshop will be relevant for both health and social care colleagues with a focus on outcomes and best practice for children and young people, who have an interest in contributing and hearing from others around this topic.


This online workshop will present a summary of the national context and research currently happening across the UK on the children’s residential care sector, including key themes and challenges for commissioners and the market, as well as presentations from two areas who are currently embedding innovative approaches as a response to these themes. The workshop will support contributions and feedback from attendees, including within breakout sessions, supporting participants to share their own experiences, good practice and suggestions.

Workshop format

The workshop will be delivered online and will feature a blend of presentations and smaller group discussions to enable participation by all delegates.