Rosie Cooper MP for West Lancashire is urging her constituents to think about fostering during this year’s Foster Care Fortnight, 8-21 May 2006, to fill the shortage of 1700 foster carers in the North West.
Foster Care Fortnight is an annual campaign co-ordinated by leading fostering charity the Fostering Network. During the fortnight fostering services all over the UK will be holding imaginative, innovative and fun events to raise awareness of fostering.
With the theme of fostering brighter futures, this year’s campaign will not only focus on the urgent need for more foster carers, but will celebrate what children, young people and foster carers have accomplished and continue to achieve every day across the UK.
Rosie Cooper MP said: "Foster Care Fortnight 2006 is a fantastic opportunity to listen to and celebrate the achievements of those at the forefront of foster care: children and young people in foster care, foster carers and their families."
"We desperately need more people to step forward and take on this vital challenge. There are few greater rewards than fostering a brighter future for a child or young person who needs a family."
Almost 50,000 children live with foster families on any given day in the UK and the Fostering Network estimates that a further 10,000 foster carers are needed. This shortage of carers means that children may find themselves being “squeezed in” where there is a gap, rather than being able to live with a foster family that can meet their particular needs. All too often foster children are moved from home to home, have to live far from friends and family, and are separated from their brothers and sisters.
With the greater diversity of skills, homes and cultures more foster carers would bring, children in foster care could be offered the choice they deserve in order to fulfil their potential and enjoy a brighter future.
The Fostering Network is the UK's leading charity for all those involved in fostering, and exists to ensure that fostered children receive the highest standards of care. For more information on fostering visit www.fostering.net.