There are approximately 60,000 children and young people who are in the care of Local Authorities at any one time. The total number of children and young people who are looked after by the state in any year rises to approximately 300,000, and the numbers seem to be increasing each year.
Statistics suggest that around two thirds of children and young people who need looking after are placed in foster homes, with the majority of the other third living with families and friends or in residential provision.
National shortage of Foster carers
There is a national shortage of foster carers in the UK.
Up to 10,000 more are required to ensure that children and young people who need foster homes have an opportunity to benefit from living within a stable, safe and nurturing family environment. You don’t need to have any particular academic or vocational qualifications, but having experience of caring for or working with children or young people really helps.
We believe that taking care of children and young people who cannot live with their own families is a very special job. Making a positive difference in the life of a child or young person is wonderful and very rewarding, but it can also be very challenging and demanding.
Professional support services
Foster carers need to work in partnership with a range of people who are involved in the child or young person’s life, this often includes; the birth parents, extended family members, Social workers, health workers, staff within education and a range of other professionals.
Fostering is a huge commitment. It will have an impact on you and your whole family. Therefore, it is vitally important to find out as much as you can and take time to discuss the possibility with all of your family so that you can make the right choice at the right time for the right reason.
Why Foster Care needs more carers
“Sometimes someone hurts you so much it stops hurting at all, until something makes you feel again and then it all comes flooding back, every word, every hurt, every moment
How could you ever understand where I come from?
-even if you ask
-even if you listen
I’m not really here, or see, or feel
You don’t remember my story, you haven’t walked my path, and you haven’t seen what I’ve seen
My past defines me
This is what I am
I am unseen, unheard, unwanted
That is what I am – if I am anything
The something that held me up, forced me down
The world turned upside down and order disappeared
NOTHING IS HOW IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE
A heavy sadness filled my soul.
Deeper and deeper I fell within myself, and nothing could pull me out
Trapped in the misery of my life
Lost in the sorrow of my soul
Unable to see the light
Unable to see the dawn
Always night time never morning, maybe you wonder why?
Mostly you try not to think about it, try to survive, try to get by
All other stuff seems unimportant compared to wanting the most important things back
Wishing you could see your mom smile again
To be with your baby brother, you know he needs you, you know he’s going to be scared, who’s going to hold his hand and say it’ll be alright to him
WHO WILL WHISPER IT TO ME?
I know I’m helpless, dependent, but what happens when those you need the most threaten your very existence
I have heard plenty of promises and they all seem the same
Push hard enough and they all prove to be empty
How do you know where the sun comes up, when you move around so much you don’t know where East is?
BUT IT ALWAYS COMES
Slowly, slowly seasons change around you
Feet safe, roots starting to grow
Little buds of hope formed
Slowly attempting to trust this new life
One day maybe I’ll feel normal and I won’t always be yelling inside
BECAUSE MAYBE I CAN’T DO IT ALL BY MYSELF
My past story, my history – is not my fault
It’s not because of me
It doesn’t have to define my future
I am lovable
I am worthy of care
That glimmer of light makes all the difference
It gives me hope that someday my SUMMER WILL COME”
Views from a child in care
Have you got the time, energy, patience and resilience to allow children to discover who they really are and help them to blossom into the person they can be and to achieve their potential.
You will rarely receive praise but you won’t need it as your dedication will be enough reward when you provide children and young people with opportunities.
You don’t have to have any special skills, the answer is in the title of the role; you need to CARE.
There will be
But this is balanced and outweighed by the trust reciprocated from a child or young person or even a smile received. You don’t need thanks and if you do then this is not the career choice for you; the role is its own reward. All children can thrive in the right environment, can you provide this? Can you support a young person to achieve the best possible outcomes?
Do you need more information?
Call us and discuss your next step towards assessment.