Arts University Bournemouth has been awarded the prestigious Buttle UK Quality Mark in recognition of its commitment to young people in and leaving care.

Created by Buttle UK – the largest grant-giving organisation in the country directly supporting children and families living in poverty – the charity awards the Quality Mark to colleges and universities which commit to support a young person who has been in care, to access further and higher education and successfully complete their studies and achieve their ambitions.

The challenges facing young people leaving care are enormous.  They are one of the most under-represented groups in education in the UK.  Often lacking family support, suffering financial disadvantage and struggling to find somewhere to live, applying for and being accepted for further rand higher education is a real achievement.

To receive its Quality Mark, the specialist creative Arts University Bournemouth had to demonstrate that it has a robust strategy in place to ensure that students from a care background can access a package of support – financial, pastoral and educational.

To date, more than half the universities in the UK hold the Buttle UK Quality Mark, together with a rising number of colleges. Susan Mueller, Buttle UK Quality Mark Manager, says: “We are very pleased with the success of this award and are delighted to extend it to Arts University Bournemouth. The university has amply displayed its dedication and initiative to helping young people leaving care to receive an education and have the opportunity to succeed and move on to the next stage of their lives.

“Our Quality Mark is also a clear way for AUB to demonstrate its credentials to partners, funders, inspectorates and the wider community – and importantly to the young people from care themselves.”

Pauline Smith, Widening Participation Manager, AUB commented “Higher Education is something that should be accessible to all – regardless of their background. We are delighted to receive this Quality Mark and will continue to highlight the opportunities available within higher education to young people from all walks of life.”

To find out more about the Buttle UK Quality Mark for Care Leavers visit www.buttleuk.org