Picture of foster carers

More carers needed to play vital role

The vital role of foster families is being highlighted during this year’s Foster Care Fortnight - and more carers are being sought to look after children and young people in Northumberland.

Every day over 150 foster families across Northumberland are giving fostered children and young people a loving, secure and stable home, and this commitment is just as important during the coronavirus outbreak.

The Fostering Network, The UK’s leading fostering charity, is linking with local authorities, like Northumberland, to use this year’s Foster Care Fortnight to raise awareness of the extraordinary dedication and work of foster carers, while calling for more people to come forward to foster.

The campaign to raise the profile of foster carers and the vital role they play in society is the largest of its kind in the UK and runs from 11-24 May. 

Councillor Wayne Daley, deputy leader and cabinet member for children’s services at Northumberland County Council, said: “I am very pleased that we are able to take the opportunity of Foster Care Fortnight to highlight the amazing work of foster carers in Northumberland - and to call on more people to come forward if they feel that they could take on this vital role.

“Foster carers accomplish amazing things every day, and continue to do so in the face of this global crisis that has affected every one of us and impacted on all aspects of our society. 

“Despite the practical and emotional challenges that coronavirus is bringing, foster carers continue to provide day-to-day support, love and stability to children and young people who can’t live with their birth families.

“The council currently supports over 150 foster families, but with over 400 children in care, there is an urgent need for more people to come forward and join the team.  

“You could make a real difference to the lives of local children and young people by offering them a stable homeand there are different roles which would suit you.

“The team is continuing to take people through their fostering training and application process, so we would love to hear from you.  Please call our team to have a chat about your options.”

During Foster Care Fortnight foster carers in Northumberland are sharing their fostering memories with us, to show people who are thinking about fostering the difference that they could make to the lives of children and young people.  You will be able to see these on our social media channels and online during the coming days.

Cath McEvoy-Carr, executive director with responsibility for children’s services at Northumberland County Council recently appeared in a video to thank Northumberland foster carers for the important work they continue to do as part of #TeamNorthumberland.  She said:  “I am always incredibly proud of our foster carers and the support they provide for children and young people in times of family breakdown and crisis.  They all do an amazing job.  Just knowing we have wonderful foster families ready to step in and help children even more during this worrying time, is really reassuring.”

For information about the different types of foster care you could offer please call Caroline Matthews on 01670 62 62 62 or email foster@northumberland.gov.uk or read more at www.northumberland.gov.uk/foster 

Kevin Williams, chief executive of The Fostering Network, said: “Foster care transforms the lives of children and young people as well as those of the foster carers and their families. This has never been more important. Foster carers help children and young people flourish and fulfil their potential, as well as provide a vital service to our society. Because this happens mainly in the privacy of their own homes – especially at the moment – their contributions too often go unnoticed.
“Foster Care Fortnight is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the work of foster carers and their families as well as recognising how transformational foster care can be for the children and young people who need it.”

To find out how you can support Foster Care Fortnight go to www.thefosteringnetwork.org.uk/fcf20   
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