Foster Care

Funding Early Help Can Reduce The Number Of Children Going Into Care

Sam Royston | Posted 13.10.2017 | UK
Sam Royston

Every child deserves to grow up in a safe, happy home as they negotiate what can seem a daunting world - especially during their teenage years with all the challenges of school, exams and peer pressure.

Allegations: Foster Carers Must Be Treated Like Other Professionals

Kevin Williams | Posted 08.10.2017 | UK Parents
Kevin Williams

Foster carers should be communicated with clearly and regularly and be given the same HR, emotional and legal support that would be afforded their social work colleagues. This would be an important step towards recognising foster carers as the professionals that they are and reducing the traumatising impact of an allegation on all involved.

Foster Care Cuts Across Race And Religion When Child Protection Is The Highest Priority

Martin Barrow | Posted 02.10.2017 | UK Parents
Martin Barrow

What business does a white family have caring for black children, or a Muslim family caring for a white girl? And maybe you are right. There are many families out there who are better suited than us. Yet when the call came, on a bleak November evening, we were the ones who opened our door to three children who were tired, cold and frightened. We provided warm baths and towels, hot chocolate and cookies, a bedtime story, a warm bed. We dried tears, and held little hands until sleep finally came. And we set three extra places for breakfast, in silence as we tried to understand the scale of the challenge we had just accepted.

Why We Must Always Listen To The Child

Chloe Cockett | Posted 02.10.2017 | UK
Chloe Cockett

Properly listening to children - giving them the chance to have their views heard, considered and acted upon - is a powerful thing, and gives a feeling of control to children. In a care system where they may not feel that they have much control at all - this makes it very powerful indeed.

Give Fostered Young People A Voice In Their Own Care

Kevin Williams | Posted 25.09.2017 | UK Parents
Kevin Williams

Hearing from children and young people and placing their outcomes at the centre of foster carer commissioning are hardly revolutionary ideas - but implementing these two things consistently could make a significant difference to the lives of generations of children.

It's Time To Make Staying Put Work

Kevin Williams | Posted 10.09.2017 | UK
Kevin Williams

Despite widespread acceptance that staying put is in children and young people's best interests, there have been a number of issues with implementation that have caused concern for all involved, have led to variability in policy, practice and participation at a local level, and have resulted in not enough young people staying put.

Teenage Years Are Tough Enough Even If You're Not A Child In Care

Javed Khan | Posted 08.09.2017 | UK
Javed Khan

We need people from all cultural, religious and ethnic backgrounds to come forward. Our foster carers are of various ages. You can be single or married, male or female, a homeowner or renting, straight, lesbian, gay, trans or bisexual. It doesn't matter. We believe you can be a foster carer and so should you.

Ex-Times Reporter Claims Paper Has 'Double Downed On Racist Coverage' Of Foster Case

The Huffington Post | Steven Hopkins | Posted 04.09.2017 | UK

A former journalist at The Times has accused the newspaper of having “doubled down on its racist coverage” of a case involving an English-speaking...

Crosses, Spaghetti Carbonara And The Qur'an

Natasha Phillips | Posted 31.08.2017 | UK
Natasha Phillips

Whilst the case of a Christian toddler forced to live with a Muslim family in England has reignited the Far Right and caused uproar worldwide, a much ...

Making Contact Work For Everyone In Foster Care

Kevin Williams | Posted 30.08.2017 | UK
Kevin Williams

Contact. It's one of the things that makes fostering what it is, enabling vital relationships to be continued even when a young person cannot, for w...

It's Time To Treat Foster Carers As The Professionals That They Are

Kevin Williams | Posted 25.08.2017 | UK
Kevin Williams

These things are very important if foster carers are to be treated as the co-professionals that they are. We hope the various reviews of fostering and the care system that are currently taking place across the UK will lead to change in all these areas.

One Million Refugees. One Million Needless Tragedies

Carey Lodge | Posted 18.08.2017 | UK
Carey Lodge

Uganda is now hosting one million South Sudanese refugees © World Vision 2017 It's been one year since Bidi Bidi refugee settlement in northern Uga...

Foster Carers Are Entitled To Demand Fairness At Work

Martin Barrow | Posted 04.08.2017 | UK Parents
Martin Barrow

Change needs to come from the top. Directors of children's services can lead by example, giving foster carers an equal voice in their fostering and adoption teams, instead of treating us like providers of bed and breakfast, as is the case too often. Respect for foster carers, no less than we deserve, is what most of us really want.

This Piecemeal Review Of The Care System Is Not The Answer Children Need

Chloe Cockett | Posted 17.07.2017 | UK Politics
Chloe Cockett

Over the past six years, we have seen a piecemeal approach to reviewing different parts of the care system. It began with a focus on adoption, and the appointment of a Ministerial Adviser on Adoption. That was followed by the Narey independent review of residential care. Now we have the Fostering Stocktake - a review into foster care.

We Make Happy Summer Memories For Children In Care

Martin Barrow | Posted 16.07.2017 | UK
Martin Barrow

If I paint a particularly bleak picture of a typical summer in the world of fostering, I apologise. Yet these are some of the concerns that preoccupy the UK's 55,000 fostering families as they prepare for the end of term. This summer they will carry much of the burden of caring for society's most vulnerable children alone, with little help from their communities. I just thought you should know.

Fostering With Pride

Fabrizio Melis | Posted 08.07.2017 | UK Parents
Fabrizio Melis

Our journey into fostering started after two successful adoptions and the understanding of how important fostering a looked after child is. Our children were extremely lucky to have had amazing foster families, who provided a loving and stable environment and also prepared them for their forever families.

Pride And Joy Of Being A Foster Family

Martin Barrow | Posted 04.07.2017 | UK Parents
Martin Barrow

We never forget what a privilege it is, to be granted these memories and to share in the joy, nor do we underestimated the scale of the responsibility we have been given. We also are conscious that each milestone we witness is a milestone withheld from a birth parent or grandparent, or a moment that has not been shared with a forever family.

This Mum Has Fostered Over 800 Children, But Says She Wanted To Care For More

The Huffington Post | Sophie Gallagher | Posted 04.07.2017 | UK Parents

An 80-year-old mum from London has fostered over 800 children in her Wembley home. Birdie McDonald, already had three biological children when she fir...

I'm The Proudest Dad In The World

David Lidstone | Posted 16.06.2017 | UK Parents
David Lidstone

I think that as a man I have quite a different relationship with G than Karen does and I play a different role. She goes to us depending upon her differing needs. But, I think that one of my most important roles is to show her what a good relationship is like. She needs to see a strong and loving relationship between Karen and I so that she makes good decisions about her future partners.

An Election That Forgot About Children

Martin Barrow | Posted 08.06.2017 | UK Politics
Martin Barrow

Where have children been in this election? The campaign has taken many twists and turns and ultimately has become, above all, an election about security, following attacks in Manchester and London. But there has been plenty of airtime for discussion about nuclear weapons, the IRA, Brexit, immigration, care of the elderly, the NHS, education and foreign policy.

Ten Things Carers Can Do To Prepare Care Experienced Young People For Independence

Chloe Cockett | Posted 06.06.2017 | UK Universities & Education
Chloe Cockett

Young people leaving care are much more likely to be living independently at a far younger age than their peers. Not because they want to, but because they are forced to. Because they've not always got the support that allows them to stay in a familial home for as long they need, they've only got it for as long as it is legally obligated.

Don't Leave Children In Care Behind

Javed Khan | Posted 02.06.2017 | UK
Javed Khan

The number of young people in care in the UK has soared to a 30 year high of 94,396 - that's 145 for every MP in the House of Commons. Of course, that rise means the number leaving care is also increasing, many of them having faced unimaginable trauma including abuse and neglect.

Why It's Important To Celebrate International Children's Day Every Day

Javed Khan | Posted 01.06.2017 | UK
Javed Khan

We support these children through services ranging from work in schools, where youngsters learn it's okay to talk and ask for help, to trauma focused practice. Through all our work we make them realise there is help out there, not just on International Children's Day but every day.

Our Grandson, The Foster Carer

Martin Barrow | Posted 29.05.2017 | UK Parents
Martin Barrow

It takes a village to raise a child, as the refrain goes. Fostering is a commitment that affects a broad community. Our grandson will feel the departure of our foster children keenly, but he will not be the only one. Over the past 18 months or so, they have been loved by so many people, both old and young.

More Foster Carers Needed To Keep Siblings Together

Kevin Williams | Posted 19.05.2017 | UK Parents
Kevin Williams

Despite the odd sibling squabble, it is difficult for many of us with siblings to imagine growing up without them. Their influence on our lives was, and continues to be, immeasurable. And yet, when it comes to fostering, siblings are being split up far too often.