Foster Families Required In Wokingham

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More than 10 local foster families areurgently needed to join the 46 Wokingham Borough Council fostering homes forsome of its children and young people in care who want to be fostered close totheir families and friends in the borough. 

With the annual national Foster CareFortnight (13 to 26 May) about to start, the borough council wants to reach outto would-be foster carers for teenagers, siblings, and asylum seeking anddisabled children who desperately need foster carers in the borough.

The council always looks for homes forthe 100 plus children and young people currently in care with its own councilcarers first.

Additional financial assistance in theform of council tax exemption is offered as part of a wide range of benefitsand incentives.

Wokingham Council Comment

Executive member for children services,Cllr Pauline Helliar-Symons said: “We’d like to find local homes for all ourchildren and encourage more local residents to come and talk to us about howfostering can change lives.”

She added: “Our foster carers findfostering enormously rewarding. Children go into foster care for all sorts ofreasons, usually not their own fault, but the work our foster carers do givesyoungsters a happier and more supported life. We are really grateful to themand value them enormously.  Please givesome thought as to whether you could be one of these special people.”

Foster carers, Steve and Monika Allum,are proud to foster. Steve said: “Since joining Wokingham Borough Council as afoster carer, three years ago, we feel part of a big family. We used to fosterfor an agency and nearly gave up because of the lack of support. Looking afteryoung people in care is challenging but we can’t see us doing anything elseafter seeing what a positive impact we have on their lives.”

Regardless of culture, background,sexual orientation and whether you are a homeowner or tenant, if you have aspare room, are aged 21 and over with life experience, live within twenty milesof the borough and have time for a child, you could foster. What matters most,is that you are the right family or person for our children.

As a foster carer, the council offersattractive remuneration packages, council tax exemption, excellent trainingincluding a specialist therapeutic programme, as well as one-to-one andout-of-hours support. Fees increase with experience often resulting in theequivalent of a reasonable salary, which could provide a complete change ofcareer. For example, an experienced foster carer at Level 2, who cares for twochildren all year, could earn more than £25,000 p.a. excluding allowances forthe child.

Foster Care Fortnight

During Foster Care Fortnight, thecouncil is holding a drop-in information day on Thursday May 23 at the DiamondJubilee Room in Wokingham Town Hall. Foster carers will share their experiencesand discuss the positive life changes created for the children and young peopleinvolved. People can drop-in anytime between 1pm and 7.45pm. 

The application process is alsoprobably much quicker than you think. To find out more, call Jackie Ross,Recruitment & Marketing Officer on (0118) 974 6204 for an informal chat orvisit www.fostering.wokingham.gov.uk