The Prime Minister has pledged to give more effective support to those leaving care by introducing a "care-leavers' covenant".

Writing in the Sunday Times, Cameron recognised that "in too many cases, the state is failing to be the kind of parent that children [in care] need".

According to Cameron, the care-leavers' covenant "will be a promise, set out in law, to everyone who has been through the care system, making sure that local authorities set out clearly what they are entitled to locally — including housing, jobs and healthcare."

Under the new plans, every care-leaver will be provided with a mentor up to the age of 25. The mentor "will provide continuing emotional support and the practical help — such as putting together a CV or managing money — that will help care-leavers to get on". 

Support for care-leavers will also be provided by businesses and institutions. The government will "extend funding for apprenticeship training to 25 for care-leavers, and work with the Arts Council to develop a new programme so that those in care can have the same life-enriching and horizon-broadening experiences that are the norm for so many of their peers."

As well as pledging more support for care-leavers, Cameron set out plans to introduce new legislation to encourage permanent adoption, even when it overrides family ties.

Reforms will also set "new, demanding standards" for all child and family social workers to meet by 2020. In a "zero tolerance" approach to state failure, the government will introduce a new regulator to oversee the system. 

The government will outline the plans in the Queen's Speech on Wednesday.