The Fostering Network has estimated that 550 foster families will be needed in Wales to keep up with the widespread demand.
To combat this, today (1 January 2020) eight local authorities across Wales have launched, #20 Reasons, a campaign to encourage people within their local area to consider fostering.
The campaign uses real foster carers and their motives for fostering to inform and inspire more families to consider looking after a child or young person.
The 20 reasons to foster range from making a difference to a child’s life by giving them a sense of love, belonging and security; to being part of building a positive future and; helping to keep a child in their local area so they can stay in school and near their friends.
All types of foster carers are needed but particularly those who would consider fostering teenagers, therapeutic carers, respite carers, emergency carers, sibling groups and children with additional needs.
Tammy, 36 is one of the foster carers supporting the campaign. She has been a foster carer for almost seven years. After years of trying to start a family of their own, Tammy and her partner chose to take a different approach through fostering.
Tammy said: “I realised that there are so many children that need a loving home and that I had so much love that I wanted to give to a child so it just made sense that this is how we could build our family.
“I have a really close bond with all of the children that I’ve fostered. One of our foster children is now 17 and doesn’t live with us anymore but still comes over for a Sunday dinner every week. Our current long-term foster children even call us mum and dad, and there’s no better feeling than that really.”
If you’ve been thinking about fostering or would like more information, contact your local authority.
Here are #20Reasons to foster in 2020:
- You can help a child who’s had a difficult past
- You’ll help build positive futures
- You can help a child reach their full potential
- Fostering is amazing and rewarding
- Meet other caring people – just like you
- You can make a difference locally
- Choose which type of fostering is right for you
- Help keep a child in their school
- Develop new skills and gain qualifications
- You’ll make a difference that lasts a lifetime
- It’s a different way to grow your family
- Become part of our fostering community
- You’ll be a positive role model
- Kindness feels good
- Local children and young people urgently need a home
- You’ll help build a child’s confidence
- You can change career
- You’ll give a child a chance in life
- Fostering gives you new perspectives
- You’ll give a child a sense of belonging