Coram: Who we are and what we do

The Thomas Coram Foundation was the first children's charity in the UK, established by Royal Charter in 1739. For nearly three centuries, it has pioneered the creation of a "home from home" for abandoned children, and the integrated provision of education and employment support to enable thousands of young people to find their way in the world.

Today, Coram remains a pioneering, developmental organisation committed to meeting the needs of the most vulnerable, and develops new ways of working that can be reproduced nationally to ensure future generations feel the benefit . Coram works with over 10,000 children and young people and their families per year, helping children born into the worst circumstances who risk suffering terrible loss, giving them the chance of love in a family, a childhood and a future. Our driving aim is to create better chances for children.


We enable children who have experienced trauma and who have been separated from their parents, to develop a sense of self-esteem, to find stability and to lead fulfilling lives


We support vulnerable children and families to be happier and more stable, to prevent later difficulties


We raise awareness about the needs of vulnerable children and young people and we influence social policies and practice
We safeguard Coram's heritage in order to continue supporting the most vulnerable children in society.

Coram has been at the forefront of caring for children for almost 300 years.

Why is our work needed?

When a family becomes isolated, and loses support networks, good parenting can become more difficult. Families sometimes break up and children are at risk of neglect and harm. Some children, because of their parents' complex difficulties, suffer within the family.
We help children who have lost their parents to find love in a new family, and support parents so they are better able to care for their children. Our reputation in the field of adoption and parenting support is excellent. The breakdown rate of our adoption matches, at only 3%, is almost eight times better than the national local authority average.

We help parents support their children

Parenting is seldom easy. They may need advice on educating their children, want to share experiences with other parents, have worries about teenagers, or just be struggling to cope. Sometimes parents are overwhelmed by their own problems and so cannot provide the security and support their children need; children suffer as a result. Coram helps parents to support their children.

Learning how to cope with life

Leaving care at the age of 16 can feel daunting for some young people. Troubled young people - not just care leavers - often risk becoming homeless. We provide accommodation to these young people, making sure that this is more than just a roof over their heads. We encourage teenagers to take part in education or training, to find or prepare for jobs and make informed choices for their futures. We provide them with the support that other young people are given by their families, nurturing their emotional and practical well-being. This year we helped young people stay in school or go to college, boosting their skills and chances of getting jobs or more training.

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