A CELEBRATION of fostering in Reading will get under way today (Monday 14th May) to mark the start of Foster Care Fortnight 2018.
The Council currently has 94 families who are proud to foster but more people are needed to ensure vulnerable Reading children stay in the town and are not placed miles away from their friends and family.
Reading’s Foster Care team will be in Broad Street to launch Foster Care Fortnight locally and will be out and about in the borough over the following two weeks spreading the message that ‘foster care transforms lives’.
Fostering has the power to change the lives of children and young people who are fostered and of the foster carers and their families.
Reading Family Placements Team are currently looking to recruit more local foster carers from all walks of life to care for new-born babies right up to teenagers.
Foster carers need to be over 21 and will have a spare bedroom – if offering to foster children who are three years of age and older – but marital status and gender are irrelevant. They can work around their current commitments and offer their help for maybe just a day or two, a few months, a year or for much longer.
They do need to genuinely care about children and young people and want to do something practical which will make a real difference.
Reading’s foster carers can depend on continuing training, support and mentoring and fees can be as much as £425 per week or £22,000 a year.
Kim Drake, Interim Director of Children’s Services, said:
“Foster carers make a real difference to the lives of children who need love, support and guidance to fulfil their potential.
“I would like to thank all our wonderful existing foster carers for their dedication and encourage others to consider becoming a foster carer for Reading children.
“We urgently need to recruit many more foster carers locally to avoid Reading children being placed miles away from their friends and family.
“Foster carers provide a stable, secure and supportive environment at what can be a difficult time in a young person’s life. Children in care may have low self-esteem and be lacking in confidence and they need nurturing and support from someone they can trust and believe in.
“Our Family Placements Team will be at events across the borough during Foster Care Fortnight and they would love to talk to anyone who may be interested in finding out more about fostering.”
The team will be at:
14th May – Launch of Foster Care Fortnight outside M&S in Broad Street
16th May – Civic Offices information session, 5pm–7pm
17th May – Waitrose, Oxford Road
20th May – Foster Carer Picnic, Forbury Gardens
24th May – Katesgrove Children’s Centre, 10am-2pm
24th May – Emmer Green Youth & Community Centre, 10am-2pm
Anyone who is interested in finding out more about fostering for Reading can visit www.reading.gov.uk/fostering, call (0118) 469 3020 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org