Make a big impact by fostering with Somerset County Council

Experienced and prospective foster carers are being urged to think if they could offer children and young people a home, and to sign up for a rewarding career fostering with Somerset County Council.

There are plenty of plus points to working for a not for profit organisation, says the Council’s Fostering Team.

Every foster carer interviewed by Ofsted during a recent inspection said they would recommend fostering for Somerset County Council. They also said that they value the training they receive from the authority, their inclusion in the service, and new developments.

Other great reasons to foster with Somerset County Council include:
• A wealth of training and professional development opportunities
• Financial support for foster carers attending training courses
• Consistent and regular placements
• Specialist teams supporting foster carers looking after teenagers, parents and their children, or children and young people with particularly complex needs
• A pay progression scheme which rewards carers for their skills, experience and learning, and recognises the need to support carers who are able to care for sibling groups
• Competitive fees
• Retainers are paid for our specialist schemes that provide an income between placements where carers need to be available at home.

Cllr Frances Nicholson, Cabinet Member for Children and Families at Somerset County Council, said: “We hugely value our foster carers and the vital work they do to support the children in Somerset who need our care.

“They give so much through their time, love, care, and commitment to helping these children and young people. But we’re also clear that, as a Council, we have a great deal to offer our foster carers in return for their dedication and professionalism.

“There are lots of people in Somerset with the skills, time and energy to come forward and foster, and we urge them to consider making that very rewarding leap with us.”

To find out more about fostering, including taking our online ‘Can I foster or adopt with Somerset County Council?’ quiz, visit http://www.fosteradoptsomerset.org.uk or phone 0800 5879900.

We’re celebrating National Foster Care Fortnight in Somerset this June!
The Council is celebrating Foster Care Fortnight 2015 (1-14 June) by encouraging people in Somerset to consider fostering at two information events:
• Wednesday 3 June, Fox and Hounds Pub, Tytherington nr Frome, BA11 5BN, 7pm-9pm. The event offers information on both fostering and adoption, and includes a presentation on becoming an approved foster carer, starting at 7pm.
• Wednesday 10 June, Canalside, Bridgwater, TA6 6LQ, 7pm-9pm. This event features a Q&A session with foster carers about fostering older children and teenagers.
The social work team and foster carers will be on hand to chat to people on both dates.

Notes to editors
To become a foster carer people need to have a spare room in their home, a commitment to help a child, patience and a willingness to learn. People from all walks of life can apply to foster. It doesn’t matter if they are single, married or in a same sex relationship, own or rent their home, have children of their own or not. And there are lots of different types of fostering, which means people can choose how much time and energy they can offer a child and what suits their circumstances best.