Kinship Care Collaborative: terms of reference

Terms of reference for the Kinship Care Collabortive.


These Terms of Reference set out the purpose of the Kinship Collaborative (“the group”), its membership and its place in the wider governance arrangements for looked after children. 


This work sets out to deliver improvement in the support for kinship families across Scotland. Members will consider current policy and legislation and explore collectively the changes that are required to drive improvement, including prioritising and developing timescales and a work plan.  

Kinship families care for children and young people who they are related to or have a close relationship with. Children and young people aged up to 18 may live in kinship arrangements, and for some young people beyond the age of transition to adulthood. Kinship carers are not birth parents. Kinship families may have had involvement with local authority social workers, or other corporate parents; but not in every situation. All kinship families should have the help and support that they need, but this will be individual to their situation. 


The purpose of the group is to: 

  • to ensure children and young people living in kinship families in Scotland grow up feeling loved, safe and respected in line with The Promise.
  • to develop a network which together delivers both national and local improvements for kinship families, including making recommendations for policy development and championing permanence for children and young people in kinship care.
  • to consider, prioritise and take forward practical solutions which will support improved experiences for children and young people living in kinship families through an agreed programme of work. This must improve lived experience without further complicating the current kinship system. 
  • to share, develop and improve knowledge and practice for social work practitioners and Community Planning Partners working with kinship families across Scotland.
  • to develop opportunities which exist across public services which may aid the knowledge and skills of kinship carers.


The group will be chaired by William Scott-Watson, Deputy Director, Strategy, GIRFEC and the Promise Division within the Scottish Government. 

Membership of the group will include: 

  • Carer Group Representatives (including the Scottish Kinship Care Alliance)
  • CoSLA
  • Education Scotland
  • Kinship Care Advice Service for Scotland
  • NHS Education Scotland (NES)
  • Scottish Government 
  • Scottish Kinship Forum
  • Social Work Scotland
  • The Promise
  • Who Cares? Scotland

Members may nominate a colleague from their organisation to deputise on their behalf. 

Other representatives may be invited to join the group as and when required. 

Accountability and governance

Individual group members are responsible for reporting back to their organisation regarding activities of the group.

The group:

  • will report to the Children and Families Leadership Group
  • will review its work and the terms of reference annually


Meetings will be convened virtually every two months and organised through MS Teams.

Secretariat will be provided by the Scottish Government. 

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