People in Sunderland have been urged to make a difference to a child’s life in 2016 by considering taking up fostering.
As many as 570 children and young people in the city are in local authority care, many of whom are waiting for a secure and nurturing foster home.
I would describe it as the best job in the worldJan Rees
Foster Care Associates (FCA), which has an office in Chester-le-Street, is launching a recruitment campaign for the new year called “what are you waiting for?”
Jan Rees, co-founder of Foster Care Associates, said: “We’re 100% committed to changing the lives of children and young people in Sunderland and across the North East, and our foster carers are at the heart of everything we do, but we need more.
“No matter what age you are, whether you apply as a single person or a couple, or have your own birth children, as long as you have a spare room and are able to nurture and support, you could become a foster carer.”
Unlike adoption, a fostered child remains the legal responsibility of the local authority and/or their birth parents.
Mrs Rees added: “Foster care is not without its challenges, which is why the support services provided by a fostering agency like FCA is so integral to carers
“However, I would also describe it as the best job in the world. Throughout our 21 years of caring for children and young people in need, we have never lost sight of what made us begin our journey – we call it care without compromise.”
Ex-teachers Gillian and Martin Anderson, from Washington, became foster carers when their birth children flew the nest.
Gillian said: “This journey has been life changing for me, my family and the young people that we have taken into our home. I’ve learned a lot about myself, my family and it has allowed me to bond more with my own kids to become a better birth parent, as well as a foster parent.”
Foster carers with FCA receive regular training and support. For more information on becoming a foster carer with FCA, call 0800 022 4012 or enquire online at www.thefca.co.uk.