Council get behind national fostering campaign to find new foster carers in Swindon
Swindon Borough Council is supporting Foster Care Fortnight, a national campaign from the Fostering Network, in the hope of inspiring more people in the town to become foster carers.
Published: Monday, 10th May 2021
The theme of this year’s Foster Care Fortnight campaign is #WhyWeCare, which encourages anyone involved in fostering to share why they are involved in fostering and why supporting local children and young people is so important to them.
Over the next two weeks, the Council will be supporting Foster Care Fortnight to inspire people of all backgrounds and lifestyles to take the first step in becoming a foster carer, and to help provide more local places for children who need them.
Throughout the campaign, which starts today (10 May) and runs until 23 May, the Council will be sharing content across various channels, including its Facebook and Twitter pages and through its resident newsletters. This content will include videos featuring genuine foster carers and care leavers, who will recount their personal experiences of fostering, to show the life-changing impact becoming a foster carer can have on children and young people in their town.
Additionally, the Council hopes the campaign will dispel common myths around fostering, which can often prevent people from enquiring. Regardless of background or lifestyle, the Council is looking for people who:
- have a wish to support children to have positive opportunities, whilst keeping in touch with their family and friends
- have time to support a child in their family home
- have a spare bedroom
As a local authority, the Council is able to offer support, training and a local fostering community to work closely with applicants throughout the programme.
Reflecting on her time as a foster carer, Carol Watts, who has recently retired as a foster carer in Swindon, said: “The best thing about becoming a foster carer is helping each child and knowing you did your best for them. Even if they don’t keep in touch as much, I know we gave them a lovely secure home and helped them as much as we could.
“It’s so rewarding to see them flourish and hopefully go on and live an independent life and remember us with fond memories.”
Councillor Mary Martin, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Providing foster care for children in Swindon and keeping them close to their support network of family or friends is so important to their wellbeing. But in order to provide foster care close to home, we need more foster carers in the Borough.
“Foster carers truly have a life-changing impact on vulnerable children and young people, providing them with the support, guidance and security to grow and develop at such a crucial stage in their lives. I would encourage anyone who is considering becoming foster carer to make the first step and get in touch with the Council.”
To find out more about what fostering is, the support and training foster carers receive and ask any questions they may have, residents can attend one of the Council’s upcoming virtual information sessions:
- Thursday, 13 May 2021 at 10am
- Thursday, 20 May 2021 at 6pm
- Thursday, 27 May 2021 at 10am
- Thursday, 3 June 2021 at 6pm
- Thursday, 10 June 2021 at 10am
- Thursday, 17 June 2021 at 6pm
- Thursday, 24 June 2021 at 10am
Residents can get in touch to book a place at an upcoming information session, either by completing a short enquiry form at: www.swindon.gov.uk/fostering or by giving the team a call on 07917 503447.