Have you been thinking about fostering for a while? If so, the start of the New Year is an ideal time to make an enquiry.
Essex County Council is holding three events across the county where members of the public can talk to experienced foster carers and find out what it is like to foster.
These are being held at:7pm, Wednesday 16 January, Central Baptist Church, Victoria Road South, Chelmsford, CM1 1LN 6.30pm, Wednesday 23 January, Essex House, 200 The Crescent, Colchester Business Park, CO4 9YQ7pm, Wednesday 30 January, Esplanade Hotel, 27-29 Marine Parade East, Clacton-on-Sea, CO15 1UU
Fostering for your local authority helps to ensure that local children are placed in Essex and can remain close to their school, friends and family. It also means that foster carers have access to all the support they need including training, networking and advice.
The County Council is particularly keen to hear from carers who are willing to consider fostering siblings, teenagers and children with disabilities as there is a particular shortage of carers for these groups of children.
Foster carers come from all walks of life – carers can be single, married, straight, gay, homeowners or renting a property and there is no upper age bracket. Unless fostering children aged under two, potential carers will need a spare bedroom to be able to care for a child in their home.
All foster carers receive full training, on-going support and a generous package of allowances and fees and are always part of a team of professionals working for the County Council to support children and families.
Michael Davis who began fostering for Essex County Council 15 months ago said: “I cannot believe the feeling of being able to make a difference. I just wish I would have found out more about fostering years ago. If I could say one thing to potential foster carers it would be to find out more, you will never regret it.”
County Councillor Ray Gooding, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services said: “If you’ve been thinking about fostering for a while, the New Year is a great opportunity to find out more. Call in for an informal chat at one of our events or visit www.essex.gov.uk/fostering
and fill in an enquiry form.”
For more on fostering call 0800 801 530