Hundreds of children and young people in secure foster homes this Christmas

Fostering Published Thursday, 21st December 2017

Every child deserves to grow up in a safe and happy home.

Worcestershire County Council has 197 mainstream fostering households and this Christmas, 332 children and young people in total will be spending the festive season in secure foster homes.

Adele Green is a long-term foster carer who lives in Kidderminster.

She said: "I grew up in a fostering household. My mum was a foster carer and throughout my childhood, I was a foster sister to lots of people.

"I currently foster care for two girls who have lived with me and my husband Michael for five years.

"Christmas is all about family and it's important for all children and young people to enjoy it in a secure home. I have three children of my own and don't treat any of them any differently.

"The two girls I care for have complex needs so for Christmas lists, I give them lots of magazines for them to cut out what they want and stick on a piece of paper to send to Santa.

"Having grown up in a foster household, I have a good understanding of both sides. This helps me make decisions that benefit everyone in the home."

Victoria Davies and her partner Sue Walker have been foster carers for five years. They currently care for two boys in their home in Redditch.

Victoria said: "After I left home, my mum became a foster carer. I saw what good it can do for a vulnerable child and the positive impact it has, so we decided to become foster carers too.

"We currently look after two young boys and this will be the first Christmas since they've lived with us. We're really looking forward to giving them a fantastic Christmas and are taking them out for a big family meal on Christmas Day.

"Christmas is the most magical time of the year, especially for children. Children in care deserve to be able to enjoy Christmas in a secure home, just like any other child would."

Worcestershire Foster carers play a vital role in looking after some of the most vulnerable children in the region.

Foster carers provide these children with the opportunity to feel happy and safe; living as part of a family. They will encourage them to do well at school, make friends and try new things and help them to keep in touch with the people who are important to them.

Whilst fostering households across Worcestershire have increased significantly in the past two years, the number of children coming into the care system continues to climb and many foster carers are approaching retirement.

Councillor Andy Roberts, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Children and Families said: "Ensuring children and young people are safe is one of the Council's key priorities. For those vulnerable children who are most at risk, we focus our efforts of providing them with a positive care experience so they can thrive and reach full potential.

"The future may seem uncertain for children and young people in care, which is why it's so important that our fostering households provide these children with secure environments to enjoy all the year through, not just at Christmas."

If you think that you might have room in your heart as well as your home to care for children and young people, then you can find out more by visiting www.worcestershirefostering.co.uk