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Foster Care Fortnight Celebrations at the Strand Shopping Centre

It’s Foster Care Fortnight (9th – 22st May), the annual celebration which allows us to raise awareness about how fostering makes a real difference to children’s lives.

The theme for this year’s Foster Care Fortnight is #FosteringCommunities and we wanted to give the local community, businesses and services who are all part of our ‘Fostering Community’, the opportunity to hear first-hand, the heart-warming and exceptional experiences from people whose lives have been touched by fostering.

To do this, our friendly team, Sefton’s Foster Carers, and young people, will be at the Strand Shopping Centre in Bootle for 4 days for you to come and chat to us. We will also be bringing some great events and activities for you to get involved in so please come along.

Wednesday 18th May – Saturday 21st May

Strand Shopping Centre – Upper Level, Unit 165 Parkside (Next to JD Sports and opposite Greggs Bakers)

Events and Activities

Decorate a Feather for our Art Installation

Our #EverydayAngel campaign celebrates our foster carers, who are our #EverydayAngels and it also urges local people to think about giving a loving home to a child and become their #EverydayAngel.

In line with our campaign, we are excited to be developing an art installation which consists of hundreds of paper feathers which will make up a pair of larger angel wings. Our fostering families have already been making our individual feathers look beautiful and we are also inviting you to pop along to the Strand to decorate your own to be added to the display.

BE AN ANGEL

You can become part of our #EverydayAngel team by coming along and taking a selfie in front of the fabulous neon wing stand that we will be bringing to the Strand while we are there. Make your visit to us even more memorable by taking a snap of you and your friends to post on Instagram or Twitter.

 

Wednesday 18th, 10 – 4pm Drop in Anytime

Our friendly team including our foster carers will be on hand for you to drop in anytime and have a cup of tea and a chat. In your own time, you’ll be able to speak to experienced foster carers and the team about how to become a Foster Carer and the benefits that come with it.

Thursday 19th May, 10.30 – 12noon Open Discussion Q&A

You are invited to be part of an audience listening to a great panel of speakers including our foster carers, young people whose lives have been turned around and representatives from the Council who are supporting our fostering families.

The event will be introduced and led by Laura Knights, Sefton Council’s Head of Children’s Social Care.

Will also be playing a video we have produced with 14-year-old Jamie who is from Sefton and who is currently living in foster care. In this heart-warming video, Jamie shares his wishes and feelings past and present.

Friday 20th May 10 – 4pm Drop in Anytime

Another chance for you to meet our friendly team including our foster carers who will be on hand for you to drop in anytime and have a cup of tea and a chat.

In your own time, you’ll be able to speak to experienced foster carers and the team about how to become a foster carer and the benefits that come with it.

Saturday 21st May 11 – 1pm Weekend Info Session

If you’ve been thinking about fostering what better place to learn more than at our weekend information session.

Meet one of our amazing foster carers Dawn, and Amina, a young person who has experienced living in foster care and now lives with Dawn.

They are eager to share their story about how fostering has transformed their lives. You’ll also be able to speak to the team about how to become a foster carer and the benefits that come with it.

We would ask you to register your interest in our events so we have an idea of numbers.

Email fostering@sefton.gov.uk or call us on 0800 923 2777

Sefton urges people to think about fostering during LGBT+ Fostering and Adoption Week

This week we are celebrating LGBT+ Fostering and Adoption Week (7th – 13th March). We want to take this opportunity to encourage lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender+ people to think about giving a loving home to a child and foster with Sefton Council.

Sefton needs more foster carers from all backgrounds regardless of their sexuality, gender, single, married, in same-sex relationships, race, ethnicity or religion.

If you feel like you have space in your hearts and your home, then please get in touch with us.

For this year’s celebration, we are sharing Mark and Dave’s beautiful story. The couple have been fostering with Sefton for 15 years and say with the support and help from Sefton and the fostering community, becoming foster carers has been the best decision they have ever made.

Mark: At the moment we’ve got three foster children 6, 10 and 13. We also have other previous foster children who are still with us and are a massive part of our family.

Sometimes we have to count how many plates we need at the table and how many seats we need there is that many of us. That includes children their friends their partners, we’re just one big family and we love it.

Dave: We have different experiences of fostering children of all ages. It’s great to see the young ones coming through, they are such a delight. They’re learning and their minds are like sponges. They want to be loved and to be hugged and its beautiful.

When you’re looking after the teenagers you can really get stuck in with sports and games. We like the outdoors so it’s great for us to get out and about with them.

There’s never a shortage of one of them wanting to play a game of pool, badminton or have a rounders tournament in the back garden. Seeing them wanting to engage is heart-warming.

Mark: When our eldest came to us he was sad. We gave him the stability and support he needed during difficult teenage years. 10 years on and he’s working and he’s really doing well in his life and being in foster care hasn’t held him back because we’ve pushed him forward and encouraged him.

Dave: If anyone from the LGBT+ community is concerned or worried or apprehensive about fostering, please find out more. We started 15 years ago, and it has been an amazing journey we’ve never been held back, and we’ve always been encouraged to be the carers that we are today.

Mark: I completely echo what Dave has said. If you are thinking about fostering honestly it is one of the most rewarding things you can do. It can be challenging at times, but you are bringing happiness and life to children who actually need love, a good home and support.

Sefton’s Foster Carers are paid for their skills, receive full training and support, plus allowances.

Anyone who is thinking about fostering can find out more by speaking to one of the team or by visiting the dedicated website at https://seftonfostering.co.uk/ 

Or call the freephone number – 0800 923 2777

If anyone is thinking about adoption, please visit www.adoptioninmerseyside.co.uk.

Foster with your local authority in the Liverpool City Region

The search continues for more foster carers to look after children and young people in the Liverpool City Region as part of a region-wide recruitment campaign.

Sefton has joined forces with Knowsley, Liverpool and St. Helens Council, to raise awareness about fostering with your Local Council.

The four authorities will be holding a joint virtual recruitment event on Tuesday 1st March at 6pm.

Applications to foster children and young people have declined significantly throughout the region since the start of the pandemic, yet there are nearly 3000 children looked after across the four authorities.

The need to find safe and loving homes for some of the most vulnerable children in our region is more important than ever before.

Cllr Mhairi Doyle MBE, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said:

“It’s great to be joining Local Authorities across the City Region with one main purpose to appeal to local people to think about fostering. We need more carers to provide the support and stable homes that these young people need to really thrive.

“Fostering is so flexible and there are lots of different roles available to suit you and your family. You don’t need any special skills or qualifications. Foster carers just need to be able to provide a solid and reliable foundation for children and young people.

“If you are interested in fostering, then contact your Local Authority. You will benefit from the support and training we provide.”

The event on Tuesday 1st March will be an opportunity to learn about the process, benefits, support and training available when fostering with your Local Authority.

There will also be the opportunity to listen and chat to an experienced foster carer who will share their experiences of what fostering is like on a day-to-day basis and talk about why they are passionate about caring for local children as part of a local authority team.

You can join the meeting via the Zoom link Launch Meeting – Zoom

For more information about Fostering with Sefton please visit www.seftonfostering.co.uk or call free on 0800 923 2777.

Foster for Sefton in 2022! Make a difference to a young person’s life by being their #EverydayAngel

The dedication and support Sefton’s Foster Carers provide to vulnerable children in the Borough means many of these young people see their carers as ‘Angels.’

This New Year, Sefton is launching its #EverydayAngel campaign to show its appreciation for all the fantastic work they do and for the care they provide.

Sefton is also urging local people to think about becoming an #EverydayAngel themselves by fostering a local child and help to turn their life around.

Angela and Paul have fostered with Sefton Council for three years and are helping to spread the important message about this rewarding role.

Angela said “We’re just ordinary people. We don’t class ourselves as angels but as a foster carer it is almost like you are a guardian angel to some of these children.

“At the moment we are fostering two beautiful little girls as well as working full time. If we can do it, anyone can”

Christine and her daughter Olivia foster for Sefton and really see the difference they are making to children’s lives.

Christine said: “I love fostering, it’s so rewarding to help children and watch them grow and become more confident”

Olivia said “I love to help my mum out, putting them to bed and giving them cuddles and kisses. To me my mum is an angel and I know our foster children think that too” 

Cllr Mhairi Doyle MBE, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said:

“Our foster carers are naturally loving people with big hearts. We know that they see themselves as normal people but to Sefton and the children they care for, they are a lifeline and they truly are our ‘Angels’.

“Through our #EverydayAngel campaign we want to highlight how Sefton really values all of our carers’ hard work and dedication.

“If you think you have those nurturing qualities and feel you have something to give then please get in touch with us and find out more.”

Sefton’s Foster Carers are paid for their skills, receive full training and support, plus allowances. Anyone who is thinking about fostering can find out more by speaking to one of the team or by visiting the dedicated website at https://seftonfostering.co.uk/ 

Or they can call the freephone number – 0800 923 2777

Sefton Council and the Plaza Cinema join forces to help bring the festive cheer to foster families

Sefton’s fostering families were enchanted as they joined together for a special screening of Encanto at Crosby’s Plaza Cinema, as part of the Fostering Services’ Christmas celebrations.

Sefton partnered with the Plaza Community Cinema in Crosby to arrange for the showing of the new Disney film, which focuses on the importance of family. The event was organised to say ‘thank you’ to Sefton’s foster families for all the invaluable work they do to look after vulnerable children from the Borough.

Angela, who has been a foster carer for nearly 30 years and who came along to the screening with her foster children, said;

“All of the children have had a brilliant time at the pictures, and it’s been so good to get together and have a catch up with other carers.

“I absolutely love being a foster carer and have always known it was something I was going to do. If anybody is thinking about it, please get in touch with Sefton Council and you won’t regret it. It’s really, really rewarding.”

Cllr Mhairi Doyle MBE, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said:

“I am so happy that we were able to bring our foster carers and their families together a Christmas time to create some special memories and put an extra smile on our young people’s faces.

“It has been a difficult year and we want to let our carers know how much we appreciate their hard work and dedication.

“Events like this show how, as a foster carer at Sefton, you will be part of one big family and support network so if you are thinking about fostering please get in touch.”

Christine Physick from the Plaza Community Cinema said;

“We are absolutely delighted to welcome foster families for a special screening at the Plaza. As a Community Cinema events like these are what we are all about.

“We’ve had a lot of happy children and happy families so it’s great to be able to give them a little celebration at the end of what has been a difficult year.”

Sefton’s Foster Carers receive full training and support, plus payments for their skills and allowances. Anyone who is thinking about fostering can find out more by speaking to one of the team.

Find out more or make an enquiry on our dedicated website https://seftonfostering.co.uk/ 

Get in touch on our freephone number 0800 923 2777

To find out about films at Crosby’s Plaza Cinema, visit Plaza Cinema | Liverpool Community Cinema

 

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