Celebration Fund for Looked After Children and Care Leavers

What is the purpose of the fund?

All councillors at Surrey County Council are committed to being good corporate parents and this means they will encourage and support children and young people in care and leaving care to achieve their potential. To help with this there is a small, discretionary fund that all Members are asked to contribute to, which as corporate parents we set aside to recognise, and reward looked after children and care leavers for their achievements

What can I apply for?

There is no definitive list of what can be applied for; however, examples include:

  • Career or business start-up. Examples: security guard course, beauty salon equipment
  • Holiday or day trips. Examples: School/residential trips, Merlin pass, football tickets, theatre trips
  • Electronics. Examples: iPhone, camera
  • Equipment for hobbies. Examples: gym equipment, musical instruments, art supplies
  • Lessons or training. Examples: music lessons, dance lessons, record studio sessions
  • Other (please specify)

Please be aware that due to limited funding available what is applied for must be outside of the core offer and what we expect the child or young person's carer to normally provide. We are unable to support requests for any form of therapy.


In order to ensure that as many children and young people (CYP) can benefit from this fund as possible, each child/young person is entitled to a maximum of one award in a financial year.

The applications and awards made through this fund are expected to make a positive difference to a child or young person's life in his/her personal growth, development and achievement.

How to make an application

Before making an application, please speak with your worker so they can check the Local Offer to ensure that there is not already an alternative way to seek financial support, such as the laptop and learn to drive schemes.

Applications can only be made by professionals working with looked after children and care leavers. This is including but not limited to; Social Workers, Personal Advisors and staff from the Virtual School.

Panel dates and application deadlines

There will be three panels held across each financial year (April to March) these take place at approximately four monthly intervals, in June, October/November and February/March.

For each financial year panel dates and deadlines will be updated on this webpage.

2024 to 2025

For the financial year (2024/2025) applications will be considered as follows:

  • 4 June 2024 panel will consider applications submitted up to 30 April 2024
  • 15 October 2024 (closing date for applications is 10 September 2024)
  • 11 February 2025 (closing date for applications is 20 December 2024)

Application stages are as follows

  • Shortlisting Panel – initial screening with nominated service representative.
  • Celebration Fund Panel - Councillors from our Corporate Parenting Board will assess each application on its own merit and it is at the discretion of the panel what decision is made.

The panel's decision is final and cannot be appealed against.

Finding out the result of the application

We will aim to make the result of any application known to you within two weeks of the panel's decision.

If the application is unsuccessful, we will explain the reason for this decision and will provide feedback to help improve potential future applications.

We want to hear from you!

If a successful award has been made an email will be sent to keyworkers to ask for feedback and an update. The panel would be delighted to hear about the ways this fund has helped children and young people so please do let us know by emailing celebration.fund@surreycc.gov.uk

Contact us

If you have any queries regarding this scheme, please email: celebration.fund@surreycc.gov.uk

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