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Friday, 05 May 2017

Trust announce foster care recruitment evenings as part of urgent appeal

Written by The Editorial Team

Launching ‘Fostering Fortnight’ (from 08 May to 21 May 2017) the Western Trust is urgently appealing for new foster carers to come forward as the number of children who require permanent placements with families in foster care continues to grow. 

Across the Western Trust there are children of all ages who may never be able to live with their birth parents. The vast majority of these children in care live with foster carers. However, in the Western Trust area, there is an ongoing shortage of ‘forever homes’ where the child will live long term with the same family for the rest of their childhood.

Speaking in front of over 90 foster carers at a recent celebration event held at Lusty Beg Island, Pat Armstrong, Head of the Fostering Services for the Western Trust paid tribute to the dedicated commitment and loving care that foster families provide and said: “The Western Trust Fostering Service is highly committed to training foster carers in how to re-parent children in care using a ‘Model of Attachment (MAP) practice’. This reminds foster carers that at the heart of their parenting is the special relationships a child forms with their caregiver which enables the frightened and vulnerable child to seek and receive security and comfort from them- with the focus always remaining on the child and not the behaviour.”

Dympna Brogan, Social Work Manager for the Fostercare Recruitment and Assessment Team said: “The Western Trust is eager to invite a range of people in the community to consider offering a child a loving, nurturing home ‘to grow up in’. Across the Trust area there are children of all ages who may not be able to live with their birth family. These children need a permanent home for the rest of their childhood.  

“If you are resilient, flexible and have the energy, time and commitment to take on the demands of being a foster carer or adoptive parents, please come along to our information sessions to talk to experienced social workers and foster carers and children and hear about the range of support which are offered to all foster carers.”

Western Trust Foster Carer Joanne commented: “I would recommend fostering to anybody who had any inkling that it’s something they want to do. It’s very rewarding and enjoyable. There are challenges, but with the help and support of your social worker and the child’s social worker, you’re never left to deal with anything on your own – everyone is a phone call away. When you see a child develop through what you have done for them it’s so rewarding. Just pick up the phone and talk to someone from the fostering team or go along to your local information session to find  out more.”

The Western Trust’s Fostering & Recruitment Team will be holding information events:-

  • Fir Trees Hotel, Strabane - 7.30 pm, Thursday 11 May 2017
  • Roe Park Resort, Limavady - 7.30 pm, Monday 15 May 2017
  • Silverbirch Hotel, Omagh - 7.30 pm, Tuesday 16 May 2017
  • Killyhevlin Hotel, Enniskillen - 7.30 pm, Wednesday 17 May 2017
  • Da Vincis Hotel, Londonderry - 7.30, Thursday 18 May 2017

There will also be information stands at:

  • South West Acute Hospital -10.00am - 4.00pm, Tuesday 09 May 2017
  • ASDA, Strabane - 10.00am - 4.00pm, Friday 12 May 2017

If you feel you have the time and space in your life to foster, contact the Fostering Recruitment & Assessment Team on 028 8283 5264 or email: dympna.brogan@westerntrust.hscni.net