New foster carers needed - Adur & Worthing Liberal Democrats
Adur, West & East Worthing Party including East Arun

New foster carers needed

West Sussex County Council needs to recruit more carers in Littlehampton and its surrounding areas as some of its foster carers are reaching, or are beyond, retirement age.

The County Council is holding a year-long recruitment campaign of monthly drop-in sessions for prospective foster carers. The next session is at Littlehampton Library on Wednesday 15 February from 10am to 4pm.

These informal drop-in sessions give people a chance to talk to existing foster carers and members of the fostering team to allay fears and answer any questions people may have.

Foster carers provide security and stability to children when they need it the most, allowing them a chance to develop and flourish in a safe, secure environment. Every child who has to come into care has its own emotional needs, history and personal circumstances. West Sussex County Council strives to match foster carers with their own unique skills and experiences to them.

After 16 years of fostering and aged 64, local foster career, Mary Pedder, explains why she will carry on caring: “I did seriously think about retiring 13 months ago as the young lad I had fostered for years was moving out to live on his own. However, due to certain circumstances, he has stayed on with me.

“I have five children of my own and a big house. When my kids left home we had lots of empty rooms and thought, well why not foster? I’ve really enjoyed getting to know my foster children over the years. I’m a young-at-heart 64 year-old but I do realise that I can’t go on fostering forever.”

Cabinet Member for Children and Families, Peter Evans, said: “To provide the highest standard of care, West Sussex County Council does its very best to match West Sussex children needing care to West Sussex foster carers.

“Children thrive on familiarity so our approach also means children and young people who need care stay close to their school, friends, people and places they know.”

West Sussex County Council makes sure a full package of training and support is provided to all its foster carers to meet the needs of the children and young people they care for.

The drop-in sessions will be held throughout the county, and more details on future events can be found at www.westsussex.gov.uk/fostering, or by calling 01403 229333.