To mark the start of the Foster Care FortnightTM celebrations, Sarah Thomas – our Director in Wales – shares what she is most looking forward to and how she plans to celebrate our fantastic #FosteringCommunities.
This is my seventh Foster Care FortnightTM as chief executive of The Fostering Network, and each year I like to kick off the campaign by celebrating all of those involved in fostering for the vital role they play in the lives of children in foster care.
The Fostering Network in Wales has recently produced a resource to help fostering services establish support groups for male foster carers, with a particular focus on newly approved male carers. The resource was written by two experienced male foster carers, with input from several other men. Here, one of the writers explains why they believe the resource – and the support groups – to be so vital.
We have seen the difference that clear national leadership has made to adoption in England, with the Adoption Leadership Board and Strategy driving performance improvements and creating clear leadership within the sector. Given that 71 per cent of children in care in England live with foster carers, similar levels of leadership and resource must now be directed to the fostering sector, which is under huge pressure. Our chief executive, Kevin Williams, explains.
Every Mockingbird constellation is led by a hub home carer in partnership with a liaison worker. These roles are unique in foster care, building a community and supporting whole families. Wendy, a hub home carer in Wigan, tells us how she got into fostering and what her hub home carer role requires.
This week sees the launch of The Fostering Network’s State of the Nation’s Foster Care 2021 report, which brings together the views of both foster carers and fostering services to highlight what’s working – and what isn’t – in the sector today. Here, our chief executive, Kevin Williams, reflects on the report's findings and what we must focus on in order to make foster care the best it can be.
Speaking to Black foster carers Fiona, Ingrid and Paulette make one thing very clear; all three of them love fostering and are immensely passionate about making a difference to young people’s lives. But they also want to make foster care the very best it can be.
Here they tell us about their experience of fostering and share their thoughts around the stigmatisation of Black children in care, matching and the recruitment of Black foster carers.
When applying to higher education through UCAS, I came across a box asking if I was care experienced. At the time I didn’t know why they were asking me this, or why it was relevant, but I ticked it, because it was the truth and I have never felt ashamed to have this status.
For Black History Month we are highlighting the amazing work Black people involved in fostering do. We also show where foster care has to do better to make sure it is the best it can be – both for Black foster carers and Black children in care.
Today we are publishing a short paper, setting out four recommendations we would like the Care Review to endorse, Foster Care: Four Recommendations for Firm Foundations. These are based on research evidence, data and, equally important, the views and feedback from our consultation with foster carers and fostering services. We want these to inform our continued dialogue with the Care Review Team as they work up the detail of their recommendations. The following post contains reflections about the Review from our Chief Executive, Kevin Williams.