At any one time there are 30 children or young people in Cornwall who need a place to call home.
That’s why Cornwall Council’s fostering team is launching a campaign this week calling on more people to consider becoming a foster carer.
They are looking for anyone who can offer a place of comfort and stability, and help a child realise their potential.
Fostering families are currently needed for siblings and teenagers in particular.
Cllr Barbara Ellenbroek, Cabinet member for children and families, said: “Fostering can be a life-changing experience for everyone involved. You could be single or married, live in a flat or house, rent or own, and come from any walk of life, because all you need to be a foster carer is to be able to provide a place of comfort and stability to help a child realise their potential.
“We have a dedicated recruitment team on hand to take your call. We can progress your enquiry by phone or video call initially, tell you all about fostering and talk you through the process.”
Fostering is a way of providing a safe and loving home for children who cannot live with their own parents. Often, this is on a temporary basis, while the parents get help to sort out problems.
Some children return to their parents after a period of being in foster care, as long as the worries that brought them into care have been successfully resolved, and their parents can look after them safely. Other children stay in foster care long-term throughout their childhoods, some are adopted and some move on to live independently.
There are many reasons some children and young people need foster care. They may have experienced family problems, abuse or neglect. For others, it might be their parents have a short-term illness, mental health issues, learning difficulties or problems with drug or alcohol misuse.
Barbara added: “Their backgrounds and experiences can be damaging to a child’s development and lead to difficulties in them trusting people. Like all children, they need to be part of a family where they are nurtured and feel safe. Given time, warmth and support, children and young people can really develop and reach their potential as individuals.
“All carers receive training, 24-hour access to support, along with financial allowances. As a foster carer you need to have the time, patience and determination to support and help vulnerable children and young people who are living away from their families. You will need to be over 21 and have the flexibility in your life to be a foster carer.”
Cornwall Council’s fostering service offers support for all foster carers 24/7 365 days a year. The Central Support Team includes social workers, family workers, youth workers and access to health specialists, and educational psychology professionals.
If you could offer a child, teenager or siblings a home, please call the team on 01872 323638 or to find out more visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/fostering
Press release issued on January 9, 2023.