June 22, 2024

South West News

South West News from Gloucestershire to Cornwall

New fostering recruitment hub aims to create more loving homes for vulnerable children in Cornwall

It is now even easier to find out about becoming a foster carer in Cornwall, thanks to a new fostering recruitment hub. 

Cornwall Council is part of a new regional initiative called Fostering South West, which runs the hub covering the whole of the peninsula. 

It acts as a single ‘front door’ for all enquiries with an expert team on hand to answer questions and offer support, and then links prospective foster carers with their council to get the information, training and support they need. 

Fostering South West

The aim is to encourage more people to enquire about fostering in the hope that more will then go on to make an application, building on the good work already being done by the individual local authorities.  

The new hub will ensure that prospective foster carers receive increased levels of support, and access to the right advice and resources to begin their fostering journey. 

This new approach to foster carer recruitment has been funded by the government for an initial period of 12 months. 

The news comes as Cornwall Council again calls on people to consider whether they could provide a safe and loving home for a child in care as part of Foster Care Fortnight (May 13 to 26). 

At any one time there are up to 40 children or young people in Cornwall who need a place to call home. 

Cllr Barbara Ellenbroek, cabinet member for children and families, said: 

“We are delighted to be part of Fostering South West. This new joined-up approach will mean we can have additional resources to promote fostering while strengthening the great work we’re already doing here at Cornwall Council to encourage more people to become foster carers.  

“We are stronger working together and we look forward to growing our family of fabulous foster carers to provide even more safe and caring homes to children and young people who need them.” 

Carrie Worth, Fostering South West Hub Team Manager, said:  

“This is an incredibly exciting and wonderful opportunity for children in care, foster carers, and all local authorities in the South West region to create more loving homes for children in care and supporting children to remain within their communities wherever possible. 

“The hub will create more opportunities for local authority fostering services to share ideas, resources and practice that will bring about better experiences for children and fostering families. The hub will create additional opportunities for marketing and publicity that will reach more people within the region to help them recognise the skills and qualities they have that could support them to consider offering children a safe and loving home.” 

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. 

“Fostering can be a life-changing experience for everyone involved so why not pick up the phone and find out more?” 

If you could offer a child, teenager or siblings a home, call the Fostering South West hub on 0300 456 0120 or to find out more visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/fostering 

Press release issued on May 13, 2024