Future Pathways - how does it work?

Here are the answers to everything you may want to know about Future Pathways.

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Future Pathways is for people who experienced abuse or neglect in care in Scotland. As long as you are over 18 now, and the abuse or neglect took place before you were 18, you can register.

To be able to register with Future Pathways, you must have been in one of these care settings – in Scotland – when the abuse or neglect took place:

  • residential care
  • boarding school (state, private or independent)
  • long term stay in hospital
  • Young Offenders’ Institution
  • foster care.

You have to be 18 or older to register to Future Pathways. There is no maximum age limit.

Any abuse or neglect has to have taken place before you were 18. There is no historical cut-off point for when the abuse or neglect took place.

Future Pathways exists to help the people who experienced abuse or neglect in care. People with families often receive support that benefits the whole family. Where we can, we will signpost family members to agencies who can help directly.

Yes. As long as you were in care in Scotland when the abuse or neglect took place, you can register with Future Pathways.

Registering is simple – you can phone, email or fill out the registration form on this website. We’ll send you an information pack explaining how Future Pathways can help. You will then have a conversation (or a series of conversations) with one of our teams of support coordinators. This will help them to work out how they can help you to achieve your goals. Together, you agree what support you would like, and this will be arranged by the team. You will then be asked to sign a Support Agreement, which outlines what you can expect from Future Pathways, what we ask of you and how you would like us to stay in touch with you. You will then have regular meetings with your support coordination team to check how everything is going, and whether it is helping you achieve what you want.

Our Information Pack is a useful guide for anyone registered with Future Pathways. We have sent it to you because you are currently being supported by Future Pathways. We thought this would be a helpful guide for you to have. It has all the key information about Future Pathways including types of support, how we work with people and how to stay connected with us. You can view and download the Information Pack here.

The Support Agreement sets out what you can expect from Future Pathways. It also sets out what is expected from people supported by Future Pathways, and makes it clear how you would like us to contact you. Everyone who registers for support is asked to sign one. You can view the Support Agreement here.


The team will work to the values and principles of Future Pathways. This means that:

We will listen to you, respect your opinions and always work with you as an individual with unique needs.

We will review your support with you regularly to make sure it is making a positive difference for you.

We will strive to meet you in a place of your choice but we can’t always guarantee that this will be possible.

We will be honest, supportive and welcoming.

We will strive to provide an environment where you feel valued, safe and believed.

We will not make promises we cannot keep.

We will keep in regular contact with you for as long as you need it.

To attend appointments we have agreed upon or to let us know if you are unable to.

To sign the form within the Support Agreement to confirm that we can securely hold your personal information in an electronic database, including sensitive information that you choose to tell us – for example, information about your health is considered sensitive.

To let us know how Future Pathways is working for you and how it can be improved.

Let us know of any changes in your personal circumstances.

Be open to exploring new opportunities for support.

Yes. If you would like a family member, friend or supporter to register you, they can contact Future Pathways on your behalf.

When you contact us to register, we will describe who Future Pathways is for and ask you a few questions to confirm this applies to you. You do not need to tell us about your experiences of abuse or neglect. And you do not need to provide any documents which confirm your time in care.

Future Pathways is a unique service and is tailored to each person, based on their circumstances and needs. For some people, they may need particular support quickly, while others may not have immediate needs and are able to wait a bit longer. If you are already registered and have a specific query about your own progress, please contact us on free-phone 0808 164 2005.

Yes, your Support Co-ordinator will arrange to meet with you at a time and place that suits you, whether in your local area or another familiar setting. We can also visit you at home if you prefer. If you live outside Scotland, your Support Co-ordinator will usually speak to you over the phone or video conference, but we can discuss this with you when you register.

Yes. You are welcome to bring along a friend, family member or support worker to your first meeting. We would encourage you after that to take forward the process yourself, but you can do this at your own pace, if you feel you still need support.

Yes. If you like you can request a female or male Support Coordinator.

Your support is built around you and what is important to you in your life. Everyone is different. Some examples of support people have accessed so far include:

  • searching for records
  • psychological therapy for trauma
  • adult education classes
  • arts groups
  • travel to visit family
  • support to get into work
  • health and fitness classes
  • driving lessons.

The support offered by Future Pathways includes one-off payments for items which will help you achieve what you want to. Any payments like this are agreed in advance between you and your Support Co-ordinator. Future Pathways does not provide lump sums.

Future Pathways does not offer financial redress. You can apply for financial redress through Scottish Government’s Redress Scheme. For more information, go to www.mygov.scot/redress call freephone on 0808 175 0808 (lines open 10am to 4pm Monday to Thursday or leave a message) or if abroad, call +44 131 297 6500, or email apply@redress-scheme.scot.

There is a Redress Support Service which delivers support to applicants as required during their application process. This is accessed via a case worker who is assigned to an individual at the start of their redress application.

Registering with Future Pathways does not affect any claim you make for redress, either now or in the future.

No, we are not able to offer payments for items or support already purchased.

If continuing with your current support is important to you, we will take all steps to try and keep this in place. Future Pathways has to make sure that the organisation or individual providing your support is doing so safely and fairly. So we check, for example, that they have adequate policies and procedures in place, for example around health and safety.

Most of the support provided by Future Pathways is not of the type that would affect benefits. If you have any concerns, you should discuss this with your support coordinating team.

Your personal information will be stored on a secure, confidential database. The only people who can access your information are Future Pathways staff, for the purpose of providing and coordinating your support.

For monitoring and evaluation purposes, anonymised information will be used to report on how well Future Pathways is meeting the needs of people who’ve registered. All information in the reports is anonymous, so it won’t be possible to identify any individual.

You have choice and control over the information that you provide. You have the right to access all personal information held about you at any time. All information is stored in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 (includes GDPR).

Yes. Any personal information we receive will be stored on a secure confidential database, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 (includes GDPR), to prevent unauthorised access. The only people who can access this information are Future Pathways staff, to help them coordinate your support.

For monitoring and evaluation purposes, information will be used to report on how we are performing. All information will be anonymised so that it is not possible to identify any one individual.

This process helps us to identify the needs of survivors, examine how we are meeting these needs and find ways to improve our work in the future.

You have choice and control over the information that you provide, and the right to access all personal information held about you at any time.


Discussions that you have with your Support Co-ordinator, or any staff at Future Pathways, are entirely confidential. We will only share information with another agency with your full written permission. The only exception to this is if there is concern for someone’s safety, or the safety of a child or vulnerable adult. Under these circumstances, we will still make you aware of the intention to pass on information to the relevant authorities.

Future Pathways supports people who experienced abuse or neglect in care in Scotland. We do this by arranging and paying for support for them, with the aim of helping them achieve a positive future.

Future Pathways is funded by the Scottish Government, and managed by an Alliance partnership of organisations. These are Health in Mind, Penumbra and the Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership. Staff from these organisations sit on an Alliance Leadership Team which also includes representatives from the survivor community.

In 2015, the Scottish Government published its SurvivorScotland strategy aimed at improving services for survivors of in-care childhood abuse. One of the recommendations in the strategy was to set up a dedicated support fund.

In May 2015 the Scottish Government announced a fund of £13.5 million over five years. The fund was initially called the In Care Survivor Support Fund, and officially opened in September 2016. After consultation with survivors, in February 2017 the name was changed to Future Pathways.

Survivors are a key part of Future Pathways, and it is important that their voices are heard at all levels, including at board level. This is why three survivors are active members of the Alliance Leadership Team.

Any organisation interested in providing services to survivors through the support fund should contact the professional information line on 0131 202 6412 or email engagement@future-pathways.co.uk. If you would like copies of leaflets or marketing materials to promote Future Pathways to the people you work with, please contact engagement@future-pathways.co.uk or phone 0141 465 9228.