Minister launches foster carer recruitment campaign

23/09/2014

Don’t rule yourself out!

Health Minister, Edwin Poots, joined the fostering mascots on the steps of Stormont Parliament Buildings to launch the Health and Social Care Trusts’ foster carer recruitment campaign.

The Regional Adoption and Fostering Service is appealing to members of the public to find out more about fostering a young person for their local HSC Trust by contacting them on 0800 0720 137 or by visiting www.adoptionandfostering.hscni.net  and enquiring online.

Foster carers are ordinary people who make an extraordinary difference to the lives of young people in foster care. Often people who have an interest in becoming a foster carer rule themselves out without seeking more information.

As part of the campaign, a radio ad will air from Monday 22 September to Monday 6 October on radio stations across the province. Listen out to hear a young man share his experience of foster care, “I didn’t settle in straight away. I found it difficult at first but looking back, it was for the best… My foster carers are great. They’re always there for me.”

Una Carragher, Manager of the Regional Adoption and Fostering Service said: “There are members of the public who have the skills and capacity to become foster carers and make a real difference to the life of a young person. However, we know that people have considered fostering but rule themselves out based on myths and misbeliefs. We appeal to anyone with an interest to find out more information before ruling yourself out”.

Northern Ireland Health Minister, Edwin Poots, gave his support at the launch of the regional radio campaign commenting: “It is essential that HSC Trusts have a pool of foster carers in Northern Ireland to give local young people in care the best opportunities in life.

We know that young people in secure and stable foster homes achieve well in school and obtain good GCSE and A Level results and some progress to University. I would urge anyone interested in fostering to find out more information before ruling themselves out.

Enquiries about fostering are welcome regardless of race, religion, language, culture, gender, disability, age and sexual orientation. Foster carers may be married, single or have a partner, own or rent their home, work or claim benefits, and may or may not have children of their own.

Belfast HSC Trust is seeking to recruit foster cares who feel they have the ambition, energy and understanding to embrace the ups and downs of caring for a teenager. If you have the time and space in your life for fostering call 028 9504 0057 or enquire online at www.adoptionandfostering.hscni.net.

For more information call 0800 0720 137 or visit www.adoptionandfostering.hscni.net