Foster Care Fortnight
Telford & Wrekin Fostering supports Foster Care FortnightTM (9-22 May) by celebrating their amazing community of foster carers and hope to encourage more people to come forward to foster.
Daniel Chell, Team Manager in the fostering service says, “We see this as an opportunity to say a big thank you to our exceptional family of foster carers for all that they do to ensure local children and young people in care enjoy a happy childhood. Providing them with secure and loving homes in which they can thrive and aspire for as long as they need them.”
“Foster care in Telford & Wrekin is at the heart or our community and we wanted to bring people together over the course of the two week campaign by hosting a range of events. Events for foster carers include pamper days, training events, and guest speakers and fun activities for children and young people. We have Dough Disco, Music Minors and an after school film night.
Foster care transforms lives for children and young people and families. Our goal is to encourage more of our vibrant community to join us to find out more about fostering at one of our virtual or face-to-face information events.
Far too often, due to a lack of foster carers, local authorities are compelled to place children with foster families away from their local communities, and sibling groups are separated. This concern comes from the UK’s leading fostering charity, The Fostering Network, joined by Telford & Wrekin Fostering.
The Fostering Network highlight this issue during Foster Care FortnightTM, the charity’s annual awareness raising campaign, as they call for more people to come forward to foster, to ensure that children in need of a foster home can be cared for locally.
There is a need for 115 more fostering households in Telford & Wrekin, to make sure every child that can’t live with their own family gets the care they need and are well supported within their community.
Telford & Wrekin need foster carers to offer all kinds of foster care. Part-time and shared care, full-time and specialist placements for children with disabilities. We particularly need foster carers who can offer sibling placements, to ensure that children can be cared for together and don’t lose vital connections with brothers and sisters.
There are currently 277 children of the 433 children in care in the borough, living with 170 Telford & Wrekin foster families. The number of children and young people coming into care keeps rising.
The reasons for children coming into care vary widely. It might be due to a parent’s illness or other problems, which mean their own family can’t care for them. Some children may have witnessed domestic violence or drug abuse, and others may have been abused or neglected.
Some foster families look after children on a short-term basis. For many others, fostering offers them a secure, permanent home. Foster carers in Telford & Wrekin provide support and care in a family setting and enable children to stay in their local community with everything that is familiar to them. This minimises further disruption to their lives by helping them stay in their school, close to their friends, and maintaining connections with other family members.
Each child’s circumstances and needs are different but every child has the right to have their needs met within their own community, together with their siblings if they have any.
Council Leader Shaun Davies (Labour) said: ‘More people are urgently needed to come forward to foster, if we want to make sure that our children can stay local and be cared for in their community.’
‘I would like to take this opportunity to express my immense gratitude and continual support to the Telford & Wrekin Foster Care community. They have continued to support our children by stepping up to foster through extraordinary and challenging times. They have made sure our children have somewhere to feel safe and loved to allow them the freedom to enjoy their childhood.’
‘The fostering community is open to everyone who wants to make a difference in a child’s life. We want to invite all the different communities in Telford & Wrekin to get involved in fostering. It is important that different identities are represented within the fostering community here in Telford & Wrekin
Councillor Shirley Reynolds (Labour), Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families added, “During Foster Care Fortnight, we want to let our foster carers know how much we appreciate them and to say a big thank you for all that they do.
Foster families across our borough make a huge difference to the lives of the children in their care providing them with a happy, safe and secure childhood.
Foster Care Fortnight 2022 is all about fostering communities and celebrating their strength and resilience. Foster carers transform the lives of children in their care, making sure that they enjoy the same opportunities we want for every child.
We are passionate about the difference that fostering makes to the lives of children. Foster carers help children to flourish and achieve.
‘If you think you have the space in your home and your heart, and the skills needed to help young people thrive and enjoy a fulfilling childhood, please contact Telford & Wrekin Fostering. You can become a foster carer regardless of age, gender, relationship status or sexual orientation.
Where to join Telford & Wrekin Fostering this Foster Care Fortnight
•On Saturday 14th May We will be at the Early Years and Childcare Careers and Training Event from 1030am - 2.30pm at Southwater One, Telford Town Centre.
•Monday 16th May we are hosting a walk and talk in Telford Town Park. It is an opportunity for informal conversations about fostering. With foster carers and members of our team.
•Monday 16th May – Information event at Ketley Community Centre. This is an early evening information event from 6.30pm – 8pm. Again, an opportunity to hear from foster carers and our team and to put any questions you have to us.
•Wednesday 18th May Facebook live from 8pm – 8.30 with a focus on fostering children with disabilities. It is an opportunity to put questions about all types of fostering.
•Thursday 19th May Facebook live from 10am – 10.30am talking to foster carer in our Mockingbird community.
•Thursday 19th May we are hosting and evening walk and talk at the Wrekin.
Foster carers, Charli Macmillan and her husband Chris have been fostering for Telford & Wrekin now for three years. They would describe themselves as an ordinary young family, with three sons of their own.
Charli said, “We first looked into fostering to find out if we could help a child known to us. Then, the more we heard about fostering for Telford & Wrekin, we decided to apply to foster and help any child that needed a home. To begin with, we thought that we would foster younger children. When we applied, ours were all under eight years old. Then, we heard about a boy who needed a foster family, who happened to be a teenager. His personality seemed like the perfect fit for our family. Three years on, he is still with us and very much part of our family.”
“I would say to anyone who is thinking about fostering to talk to the team at Telford Fostering. They are a fantastic team. They offer excellent training, a wide range of support including support groups and regular communication. We have felt connected to the team from the beginning. I would recommend Telford Fostering to all potential foster carers, they are a wonderful team and nothing is too much trouble.”
We urgently need more foster carers, particularly for older children, siblings and children with disabilities. If you are thinking about fostering, now is a great time to get in touch. Come along to one of our information events this Foster Care Fortnight to find out more - https://www.telfordfostering.co.uk/