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Shortage of Foster Carers in Lancashire

February 8, 2019 | matt

The number of children being taken into care in the Lancashire area has risen by 18%, as reported by the Lancashire Telegraph.

Compared to 2014, there are now more than 500 additional children in care across Lancashire including Blackburn with Darwen.  This means there are more children being taken into care than the amount of foster carers available to look after them.

Lancashire County Council have revealed that around 20 children each week need urgent foster care placements. 

With over 2,000 children in the care of Lancashire County Council and almost 400 in the care of Blackburn with Darwen, demand for new foster homes is high and campaigns to recruit foster carers have been slow to reap results.  The Fostering Network has predicted that foster care services across the North West need to recruit a further 1,240 foster families in 2019 (this is separate to adoptive parents, read about the differences between fostering and adoption here).

So how do you recruit a foster carer?

Foster Carer Recruitment Targets 2019.jpg

 The benefits to children in care should be emphasised, yet all too often recruitment campaigns focus on the benefits to foster parents such as fostering allowances, tax breaks and career development.  Yes, these are ‘features’ of being a foster care which help make ends meet.  But the ultimate benefit is to the child or young person who is provided a stable home environment, consistent care and loving care-givers able to respond to and meet their needs.  That is why the majority of foster carers enquire about fostering - because they want to help vulnerable young people, not themselves.

 Investing time in children’s nurture and development should be primarily motivated by a desire to help young people and make a positive difference to their lives.  For example, we regularly hear from people who say they want to “give something back” and help others who are less fortunate.

 Family care is looking for Foster Carers who embody this passion and desire to give something back.  No experience is needed, full training will be provided and you will be supported through every step of the process.

 David Barrow, Registered Manager for Family Care Fostering, has spoken about this issue as a matter of urgency:

 “Right now there is an urgent need for foster carers who will support teenagers and keep sibling groups together.  The North West has the highest recruitment target of foster carers at 1,240 - compared to 930 in London!  If ever there was a time for someone to enquire about fostering in Lancashire, it’s now.”

If you’re interested in becoming a foster carer, make an enquiry today and see where it goes.  The process takes between 4-6 months so the sooner you enquire, the sooner you will be making a difference to a young person's life.

You can also check out our FAQ's page and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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