Foster Care Fortnight
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.
As someone who was raised in a family that fostered, it's clear that fostering is not just a one-way street. I've seen foster children from my family go on to flourish and succeed, which is why my parents, and many other foster carers do it. According to the Fostering Network, every twenty minutes across the UK, a child comes into care in need of a foster family. This means that during Foster Care Fortnight alone over 1,000 children will require a foster family.
If you're considering becoming a foster carer, the process of becoming a foster carer is far more straightforward and inclusive than you might think. The most important, and time consuming, stage of the process is deciding if fostering is right for you.
Tonight, 64,000 children across the UK will go to sleep in the safety and security of the loving home of a family who have made the commitment to foster - and The Fostering Network's Foster Care Fortnight is a unique opportunity to celebrate those 55,000 foster families who make this possible.
When we became foster carers some years ago we decided that we would focus on short-term care, helping to keep sibling groups together while their futures were decided by others. But, as we have learned, 'short term' means anything from a few days to many months, and even years.
Stability affects us all, and when you have none you feel alone. Children in foster care are our children, and as a member of a fair and good society we have a duty to do all we can to make them feel loved and supported. They deserve a positive future as much as any child and at The Fostering Network we're determined to help them achieve that.
The last few weeks have seen a renewed focus from the Government on the system of care for children in England and Wales and, specifically, an attempt to fundamentally reform the adoption system.
Every 22 minutes across the UK, a child comes into care and needs a foster carer.