Sheffield City Council is asking more families to help change the futures of children and young people throughout the city by becoming foster carers.
The call for more carers comes during Foster Care Fortnight, a national campaign which runs until Sunday 27 May.
In Sheffield, this year, we need to recruit between 40 and 50 additional people from all backgrounds to become foster carers to look after our children in care.
Rachel Crossley started fostering six years ago, with her partner Dean Allott and hasn’t looked back since. She has two grown up sons and a 15 year old daughter. Once her two sons had moved out she was keen to foster, something she had always wanted to do.
She said: “You really do make a difference to these young people’s lives. Some of the children have come to me lacking the most basic of skills including reading, sharing family meal times and finding trust.
“Another child was completely frightened and withdrawn. She would be left in a blind panic after a door slammed. By the time she left she was able to relax and act calmly in any situation.
“Even when children are with you for a short period of time, you know you are helping them with an important transition, supporting them to move on to an adoptive family or into long term foster care.
“You don’t have to be the perfect mum to be a foster carer; everyone is only human after all. But it you have a spare bedroom and are able to give a child love and some time make sure you get in touch with the council.”
Laura, a fostered child said: “A foster carer should be understanding, should respect your decisions, who you are. And most importantly treat you like you are part of their family”
Carly Speechley, Director for Children, Young People and Families at Sheffield City Council, said: “The foster carers in our city do a brilliant job. We need many more people to become foster carers – it’s challenging but also rewarding and those that do become foster carers can and will change lives.
“Please get in touch if you’d like to find out more details – we’d be delighted to hear from you.”
Councillor Jackie Drayton, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families at Sheffield City Council, said: “I’d like to take the opportunity, during Foster Care Fortnight, to say a big thank you to all the foster carers in our city, for the wonderful way they care for our young people.”
For more information go to sheffield.gov.uk/fostering or come along to meet our team and foster carers like Rachel at our information evening on Tuesday 15 May, 5.45pm-8pm at Quaker Meeting House. You can call Ruth to register 0114 273 5075.