A campaign to find big-hearted residents prepared to take both a parent and their young child under their wing has been launched.
We are looking for new parent and child foster carers to come forward to guide parents, some who are young, first time parents, during an emotional time in their life.
This involves inviting a parent and child into your home, often a mother and her baby, for a few months, and providing emotional support and practical parenting guidance.
Carers will be supported by an experienced team and will receive training and ongoing support.
Julie*, who is a parent and child carer, says that despite only looking to foster young children at first, she loves supporting teenagers and young adults who are new to parenting.
Being a parent and child carer is a very rewarding role. As a carer you’re there to support the parent, giving them lots of guidance and lots of emotional support.
“I would say my main role is to give plenty of support to guide them to become a parent who understands the needs of their child in every way, from emotional support and keeping their child safe, to keeping the child clean and healthy.Person:Julie, parent and child carer
Foster carers come from all walks of life. The essential criteria is being committed to make a difference to the lives of children. You need to be aged over 21 and, unless fostering very young children, have a spare room.
It is so rewarding when you have a successful ending for the parent and their children and you see them go on to live their lives together successfully.
“You are part of a team when you have a placement so don’t worry if you think you are going to be on your own, that’s definitely not the case: you will have a strong network around you and other carers who will also support you.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity I feel privileged to be part of it.Person:Julie, parent and child carer
More information from existing carers and staff will be available at the next ‘Find out about Fostering’ event being held tonight (Tuesday, July 24).
We really want new carers to come forward to help empower and support new parents to develop their skills.
“If you are a person young people turn to for support, you would be a perfect role model for one of our teenagers in care. So please give the team a ring, we’d love to hear from you.Person:Councillor Ivan Ould, county council cabinet member for children and families
From August 1, our parent and child foster carers will receive £660 (tax free) per week.