Tuesday, May 02, 2017
Lancashire County Council is holding a number of events throughout the county to celebrate Foster Care Fortnight and recruit new carers.
Foster Care Fortnight is the UK’s biggest foster care awareness raising campaign, delivered by fostering charity, The Fostering Network.
Amanda Hatton, Director of Children's Services at Lancashire County Council, said: "We are pleased to take part in this great campaign which showcases the commitment, passion and dedication of foster carers. It also supports fostering services to highlight the need for more carers. We are always looking for new foster carers to care for the range of children who come into our care each week, with the greatest need being for foster carers for older children, sibling groups and children with additional needs.
"The theme of Foster Care Fortnight this year is 'foster care transforms lives', and we know this isn't just the lives of the children and young people who are fostered, it also has the power to change the lives of foster carers, their families and all those who are involved in fostering."
Foster carer Lisa Bannister has worked with Lancashire County Council for five years. She talks about her experiences of fostering a teenager and how it changed her preconceptions:
"My husband and I had never fostered a teenager before so when we were asked to take a 14 year-old girl for an emergency placement we had a lot of concerns that they would have a bad attitude and problems with smoking, drinking or stealing. We couldn’t have been more wrong! When I opened the door Hannah stood there like a new born lamb, thin, shaking and obviously scared to death.
(Name has been changed to protect the identity of the child.)
Lisa continued: "Actually she was the loveliest teenage girl you could ever meet. Her problem was and always will be, she craved being loved. She stayed with us not for the weekend but for 12 months. It certainly wasn’t all plain sailing, but we have no regrets, and still keep in touch. Hannah is now in independent living and is enjoying it. She texts me every day, and always tells me how much she loves us."
As well as the number of events taking place throughout the county, there will also be a Fostering Information Evening at County Hall on Wednesday 17 May at 6pm. There is no need to book but please arrive early to avoid disappointment. You will have the opportunity to meet experienced social workers and current carers and ask questions.
No formal experience or qualifications are needed to be a foster carer, all you need is a spare room available and a desire to make a difference to a local child's life.
A package of support is available 24/7 to help foster carers in their role, including local support groups, their own social worker, a dedicated helpline and flexible training.
If you're unable to come along to an event, you can still call the fostering recruitment team on 0300 123 6723 or visit the website: www.lancashire.gov.uk/fostering
Foster Care Fortnight Events:
Tagged as: Children, Education and Families