By fostercarevalues, May 29 2015 12:59PM
It’s difficult to believe that it’s that time of year again - Fostering Fortnight is here so Fostering Agencies across Wales and the whole of the UK will be redoubling their efforts to promote the great work of existing foster carers and to get the message across within all our communities, that more Foster Carers are urgently needed. With research consistently showing that there is a national shortfall in foster carer numbers across Wales of between 550 and 650 the challenge has never been greater for recruiters.
Research trends shows that the role of foster carers is widely admired and supported within our communities which is fantastic news however the same research is also telling us that the role of Foster Carer is often misunderstood with one of the biggest misconceptions being around just who can become a foster carer ? For many people the picture of a ‘typical’ foster carer is still a white, married couple, usually in the age range 30 – 55 who live in a large property which they own.
One of the biggest recruitment challenges for Fostering agencies therefore is how we challenge this misconception and get the message across that we are looking to recruit new carers from the broadest possible base.
Our registered manager Ian Jones said: “Here at FCV we recognise that the looked after children’s population is made up of young people from all sections of our community and to reflect this fact, we aim to undertake our recruitment activity in ways which challenges the stereotypical view of what a foster carer should look like and offers the broadest range of people - white, disabled, black, married, single, gay or straight the opportunity to become carers.”
So here at FCV our approach to foster carer recruitment not only reflects one of our core values, which identifies that we believe diversity makes us stronger, but also ensures that our agency is best placed to meet the widest range of needs presented by young people.
To reflect this position we believe that the baseline eligibility criteria for being considered for approval as a carer are: being 21 or over, having a spare room and having no record of offences relating to children and of course most importantly a strong belief that you can offer a stable loving home to a vulnerable young person.
So ask yourself do you know what a foster carer looks like? And remember carers come from all walks of life they could be a 21-year-old single male, a same-sex couple in their late 50s, the family that live next door or YOU.
If Foster Care Fortnight has encouraged you to consider foster care in North Wales, why not give us a call on 01745 354992 - we promise you’ll be greeted by a real person that will be able to answer all your questions in a friendly and open way.