DURING the next 18 months, it is hoped that Children’s Services will have its own residential care home so they have more control over care placements.

In that time scale Children’s Services hopes it will be able to find, buy, renovate and staff a facility.

The plan was revealed at a meeting of the Health and Care scrutiny committee on Friday, October 18.

An anecdote by head of children’s service, Jan Coles, explained how a child, having lost a placement, was being taken at night to an emergency placement in the Midlands, when staff were called to say this had fallen through and the placement given to someone else.

Circumstances were all out of the department’s hands and they had to find another placement late at  night.

Committee chairman, Cllr Gwilym Williams (Conservative – Disserth and Trecoed), asked  “Are you considering getting a property to build a residential care home in Powys?”

“Are we doing it as a policy or is it just an aspiration?”

Jan Coles, said: “We are, and plans are well underway. We have a number of capital bids in to various funds, both to buy a private property.

“But also looking at what could be released from our own properties to make that happen. We’re quite well down the road.”

“It would look like a family home, we would have no more than three children in them.”

She said that staff had already been out to look at some properties.

Cllr Williams added: “It’s a good idea, so let’s get on with it. Do you have a time scale for this?”

Ms Coles replied: “During the next financial year (2020/21) we should have at least one of our own residential homes.

“We have to get a property, bring that property up to scratch, get it registered, find the workforce and fund all of that.”

Cllr Susan McNicholas (Labour – Ynyscedwyn) asked if the homes will be put in to areas where they had the most placements?

Ms Coles said: “Yes. We need more than one so it’s a start.”

Ms Coles added that the committee would be updated on how the project progresses.