A ‘Care Leaver’ is a person who spent time in care as a child (under the age of 18). This care could have been foster care, residential care (mainly children’s homes) or another arrangement outside their immediate or extended family. The care could have been provided directly by the state through a court order or voluntarily, or by the private sector.
More than half a million children were placed in institutional and out-of-home care under various arrangements. Care Leavers may also be known as ‘Forgotten Australians’, ‘Former Child Migrants’ or ‘Stolen Generations’.
Aged care has been identified as an area of particular anxiety for Care Leavers given their previous experiences in institutional care. The Australian Government has developed the Caring for Forgotten Australians, Former Child Migrants and Stolen Generations Information Package for aged care providers to help them understand and support Care Leavers.