The Fostering Network welcomes the announcement of additional funding to support all foster carers in Northern Ireland during the Covid 19 crisis, made by the Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) in Northern Ireland last week.
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Foster carers are facing financial insecurity after falling through the gaps of government funding schemes according to leading fostering organisations in the UK.
In an open letter to governments around the UK, The Fostering Network, alongside TACT, the Nationwide Association of Fostering Providers (NAFP), CoramBAAF (and AFA in Scotland) is calling for foster carers, who are not covered by existing funding schemes, to be financially supported.
Survey findings published today have led the UK’s leading fostering charity, The Fostering Network, to warn that children in foster care in Scotland are subject to a postcode lottery when it comes to how much money is provided for their day-to-day care. It follows more than a decade of regular promises from the Scottish Government to bring this geographical discrepancy to an end.
Shopping for food, cooking meals, washing clothes. There are many skills that young people need to learn before they are ready to live independently, but managing money is one of the most important.
Foster carers play a primary role in teaching the young people they care for about managing money and saving.
Opening a bank account is the crucial first step for young people in developing their financial independence, including learning to manage money and use internet and mobile banking. Most young people will have access to a choice of accounts once they turn 11 years old. However, those in foster care can face barriers that make it harder for them to open an account and as a result their financial education can suffer.
Responding to the article in Sunday’s Observer newspaper about the “cash crisis pushing child services to tipping point”, Jackie Sanders, director of communications and public affairs at The Fostering Network, said: ‘It comes as absolutely no surprise that the local government association in England and others are calling for urgent investment into the children’s social care system.
The survey, CUTS - the view from foster carers (England): the impact of austerity measures on fostered children and the families that care for them, carried out in February 2016, highlighted the negative impact of local authority budget cuts in a number of areas, including practical and financial support for foster carers, children’s access to their social workers and other services, especially mental health services.
We are delighted to announce a new partnership with The Mortgage Brain, who are taking over from Endsleigh to provide specialist mortgage advice to our foster carer members and a discounted arrangement fee for a completed mortgage. Advisers at The Mortgage Brain have helped many foster carers secure mortgages over the past five years and they are looking forward to helping our members find the right mortgage for them.
The local authority will be required to evidence that each staying put arrangement meets ‘basic standards’. It is the local authority’s responsibility to provide (whether directly or through commissioned services) support to both the young person and to the former foster carers. This includes foster carers approved and supported by independent fostering providers. The levels of support to be provided should take account of the individual circumstances and needs.