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Suffolk to launch new search for foster carers for teenagers in need

PUBLISHED: 10:57 23 October 2017 | UPDATED: 10:57 23 October 2017

Suffolk County Council has launched a fostering campaign to find more foster carers for teenagesrs. Picture: GETTY IMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO

Suffolk County Council has launched a fostering campaign to find more foster carers for teenagesrs. Picture: GETTY IMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO

Archant

Suffolk is set to launch a new campaign to try to find more foster carers for children who need to be moved away from their own families.

Gordon Jones: Picture: JAMES FLETCHER Gordon Jones: Picture: JAMES FLETCHER

At present, 820 children currently live in care in Suffolk and the county council says there is an urgent need for more people to come forward to foster.

The first campaign will focus on the need to recruit more foster carers for teenagers.

Suffolk Fostering Service is the longest established provider of services in the county, offering competitive fees, 24-hour support services and up to 21 days’ paid leave per year.

The first campaign focuses on the real-life experiences of two Suffolk Fostering Service foster carers, Ethel from Ipswich, and Sammy from Lowestoft.

Teenagers in care have often gone through a great deal in their lives and this campaign aims to give an honest reflection of what it takes to be a foster carer and the rewards that can come as a result.

Sammy said: “Teenagers, whether they’re in care or not, can be challenging. My role is to give them the confidence they need to better themselves and improve their situation. One of the teenagers we cared for a couple of years ago now has her own flat, goes to college and has a good job. She came back to us and said we gave her the confidence to do that.”

The campaign is accompanied by a new promotional video which features both Ethel and Sammy, providing an insight into what it takes to be a foster carer for teenagers and the positive difference they make to a young person’s life.

Gordon Jones, cabinet member for children’s services, education and skills, said: “Children in need of foster carers are some of the most vulnerable members of our society and helping them grow into successful, confident and resilient young adults can be hugely rewarding.

“It’s really important to get more people talking about foster care and I would encourage Suffolk residents to look at their own lives to consider whether they have the patience, compassion and the spare room required to provide a child with the secure home life they need.”

For more information visit: www.fosterandadopt.suffolk.gov.uk

Suffolk Fostering Service will be hosting several pop-up events across Suffolk:

•Tuesday, October 24, 10.30am - 4.30pm, Ipswich Museum

•Saturday, November 11, 9.30am - 12.30pm, Stowmarket Leisure Centre

•Saturday, November 11, 12.00pm - 6.00pm University of Suffolk, Ipswich

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