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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

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Council urges people in Cumbria to consider fostering

Cumbria County Council and its Fostering Friendly Employers are asking everyone in Cumbria to consider whether they have space in their lives to look after a child who needs them.

There are no requirements around your relationship status. Foster carers may be single, married, in a civil partnership or living with a partner. Foster families come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes, with almost 25 per cent of Cumbrian foster carers being single.

There are over 600 looked after children in Cumbria but only 200 fostering households. So that every child gets to stay in right home, in the right place, more people are needed to become foster carers. During Foster Care Fortnight (12-25 May) the County Council are taking the opportunity to bust the myths surrounding fostering.

Annabelle Hoggan foster carer with the County Council said “When I was 29, I decided that I wanted to be a mum and as there were no eligible men on the scene I decided to go it alone. I now have five permanently placed children and one short term fostering placement, plus my 79 year old mum lives with us. It’s a juggling act to work full time and look after the children but the council are a sympathetic employer and have allowed a flexible approach to my work life balance. Also I’m very organised, I don’t need much sleep and my family help out!

“You need to make it work for you: there are 2 rules in my house – between 9-10pm is my time, and I never go to bed without everything being set up for the next day. I like to lay it out on the kitchen table so I pick up all my stuff as I get the children out the door handing out lunches, school bags etc. It can be a bit chaotic but I love having a house full.

“Whether you’re married or in a relationship really doesn’t matter. What’s important is that you have the time and space to look after children.”

Anne Burns Cumbria County Council’s cabinet member for children’s services said “Although many children need two-parent families, there are equally those who would benefit from the one-to-one attention that a single carer can provide.

“We want to hear from you - Don’t rule yourself out - become part of Cumbria’s biggest family, and foster a child.”

If you’ve been thinking about it and would like to speak to someone to find out more come along to one of the drop in sessions, call us 0303 333 1216 or take a look at the website Cumbria.gov.uk/fostering

Thursday 22nd 18.00-20.00 – Health and Care services, New Oxford Street, Workington, CA14 2LW

Saturday 24th 10-1400 - 5 Portland Square, Carlisle

To find out news and updates on fostering and adoption in Cumbria follow @FosterAdoptCCC on Twitter or facebook.com/cumbriafosteringandadoption

For more information contact Alice Gill communications adviser on 01228 226241 or alice.gill@cumbria.gov.uk

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