Local NewsLocal News from North & South TynesideUncategorized

Plans to Recruit and Retain More Foster Carers

Photo Credit: South Tyneside Council.

The wide range of activities aimed at encouraging more people to think about becoming foster carers will be outlined to members of South Tyneside Council next week.

A report to Borough Council highlights the steps that have been taken recently in pursuit of the Fostering Service’s vision to give every child in care a healthy and successful life in a safe and nurturing home.

Members will be told that progress is being made towards the Council becoming a ‘Foster Friendly Council’ which will see fostering made more accessible to its own staff and which will hopefully encourage more employers in the Borough to do the same.

Recently the fees foster carers receive was increased, alongside an increase in the mileage they can claim, which is hoped will support recruitment and retention, particularly during the cost-of-living crisis.

Councillors will be told that the government is investing over £3million to create a Northeast Pathfinder which involves 12 local authorities – including South Tyneside – to co-design a regional hub to provide support to those interested in applying to foster.

The creation of the regional support hub includes a regional website acting as a single front door to which all twelve councils will direct every prospective foster carer enquiry.

Councillor Adam Ellison, Lead Member for Children’s and Families’ Social Care, said: “We know that children achieve more when part of a loving family.  If not living in a safe, warm, and loving birth family, a foster family is in their best interests.  We have an amazing network of foster carers in South Tyneside but unfortunately we simply do not have enough.

“The regional hub offers us an opportunity to work collaboratively, share knowledge and benefit from the collective regional work to increase the number of in-house foster carers.”

Delivering on the vision for fostering will support the Council’s ambitions for people to be healthy and well throughout their lives and be part of strong communities.

Members will be asked to endorse the report at the meeting of the Borough Council on 7 September.

South Tyneside Council is always keen to hear from people interested in fostering. To find out more about fostering, visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/fostering or contact the fostering service on 0191 423 8500 or email fostering@southtyneside.gov.uk