Make A Connection: That’s the theme of Foster Care Fortnight, which is taking place from June 1-14.
Central Beds Council’s fostering team is appealing to anyone who has considered fostering to ‘make a connection’ and get in touch to find out more.
With around 27,000 children estimated to come into care across the UK this year, there will be a need for around 8,600 new foster carers.
In Central Bedfordshire there is a particular need for people wishing to foster older children and teenagers, sibling groups and also foster carers from black and ethnic minority backgrounds.
Fostering is open to people of all backgrounds, whether single, married, in a long-term relationship or civil partnership. You do not have to own your own home, and the main requirements are being able to offer youngsters who have entered the care system the time, space and support to develop and enjoy a childhood they may otherwise have not.
Councillor Carole Hegley, Executive Member for Social Care and Housing, said: “Fostering is all about making connections, which is what our army of foster carers do with the young people they help.
“Without them, the young people who enter the care system in Central Bedfordshire wouldn’t be able to enjoy what many of us take for granted – growing up in a loving, stable family.
“Often people say that they were daunted ahead of making that first call, but once they realise the support they receive throughout the whole process and see the difference that they truly do make, they realise what a fantastic thing they are doing.
“So, if you have ever thought about fostering, I would encourage you to make a connection and contact our Fostering team.”
An information evening is being held from 6.30pm to 8.30pm on Wednesday, June 3, at Millbrook Village Hall, in Sandhill Close, Millbrook for anyone wishing to find out more about fostering.
Alternately, visit www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/fostering, call 0300 300 8181 or keep an eye on the Lets Talk Central Facebook and Twitter pages for regular updates throughout Foster Carer Fortnight as well as video of foster carers describing their experiences.