The Lighthouse

Photo from Lighthouse - an exhibition of supportive messages like 'Don't Give Up',  suspended by wires.

Lighthouse is a new type of children’s home designed to improve outcomes for children who grow up in children’s homes. It has spent several years investigating effective models used in Western Europe (particularly in Denmark and Germany) where outcomes for children in care are much better.  Based on this research, Lighthouse has designed and developed a children’s home unlike any other in the UK.  It offers a new way of running British children’s homes and has the potential to transform the current system. 

Lighthouse will create homes where children can thrive and where education is central to the approach.  It will invest in trained (or will provide training for), qualified staff able to build authentic relationships with young people in care in thoughtfully designed spaces. Lighthouse’s entire approach is informed by social pedagogy, a relationship-based way of working with children. 

Lighthouse children’s homes will have a focus on education and enabling children in care to have access to all the same opportunities in life as any other child.

Lighthouse has been ‘incubated’ by Catch22 since 2017 from which it has received a tailored programme of support through the Incubate, Accelerate and Amplify Programme.  Our £96,000 n 2018 was to Catch22 for the specific purpose of funding the salary of the Director of Lighthouse for three years.

Lighthouse children’s homes are an innovative new approach to residential care for children and young people who grow up in care homes. Based on established and successful models running in Denmark and Germany, they will have the potential to be replicable and to transform the current system in England for the better.


“Residential care should not be seen as a last resort, a place for children for whom we cannot find a ‘proper’ home. Too many local authorities see it as a failure rather than an opportunity for a vulnerable young person. Residential care should be a specialist service for those who are unsuitable for foster care, but who need high-quality support from experts”.

The Lighthouse