More children than ever are coming in to foster care. Why?
Lucy Stevens - 21st September 2021
As Placements Manager at Eastern Fostering Services, I read hundreds of referrals a month for children who are in need of a foster carer. Whilst the trends I am speaking about are anecdotal, I get a good insight into what the national picture is when it comes to foster care. How are foster carers found for the children who need them? As a small fostering agency, Eastern Fostering Services receive requests for foster carers (referrals) from several Local Authorities. Many of these come from “local” Local Authorities: in our case, Essex, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire as well as Norfolk and London. But we also receive requests from Local Authorities as far south as Devon and as far North as York. These
Fostering in the wake of Covid. What’s changed?
Lucy Stevens - 17th August 2021
On the surface, life in the fostering sector has continued throughout the pandemic. Children have continued to come into care, foster carers have been approved (albeit in smaller numbers), carers and children have coped with the strain of lockdowns and the social isolation Covid has brought. There have been many challenges for all of those who work in the foster care sector and of course for the children growing up in it. Lurking in the background throughout all those challenges has been one dreaded question: What is going to happen when we open up again? Many of us suspected that as professionals once again began seeing children in schools or during home visits or medical appointments, we would inevitably see
Fostering in focus: Transferring fostering provider
Lucy Stevens - 21st July 2021
In this blog, we meet Julie. Julie has been a foster carer for over 10 years. We asked her to share a little bit about her story and how she ended up fostering with Eastern Fostering Services and her process of transferring fostering provider. “Speaking to other foster carers is a must!” Transferring Fostering Provider: It’s all about the support! I originally started fostering with a small agency, which I loved. I believe they made me the carer I am today and taught me so much more about good fostering than I feel most carers know. Good fostering practise, for me, is about advocating for the child, finding well-matched placements and being able to get the quality and level of
Fostering focus: What is it like to transfer fostering agency?
Lucy Stevens - 13th July 2021
“Eastern Fostering Services have stood toe to toe with us.” Terri and Paul decided to transfer fostering agency over to Eastern Fostering Services in 2019. They arrived with 3 children, who they had been long-term fostering, and a birth daughter. “We had been fostering for 10 years when we made the decision to transfer fostering agency. It was not something we did lightly but we really had no choice given the lack of support we were receiving. We feel that advocating for the children in our care is one of the most important roles of a foster carer. We felt that the agency we were with put the need to make placements above the needs of the children and they
How do I transfer foster agencies?
Lucy Stevens - 6th July 2021
I am already a foster carer but am not happy with my fostering provider Making the decision to transfer foster agencies is not easy and you will have many questions. Foster carers need a lot of support from their fostering provider in order to confidently and successfully carry out the enormous task we ask of them. As a fostering agency, we do not pursue existing foster carers, however we are sometimes approached by carers who are looking to transfer foster agencies. By far the most common reason people tell us they want to transfer foster agencies is that they do not feel well supported by their current provider. In these circumstances, we feel it is really important that foster carers
Tags: change, changing foster care agencies, fostering, transfer, transfer between fostering services, transfer foster agencies, transfer foster care agencies
Thinking of fostering? Good fostering support is a must.
Lucy Stevens - 18th June 2021
We believe fostering has a huge role to play in society. Foster carers look after some of our most vulnerable children. It is massively rewarding but requires grit, determination, and commitment. Having good fostering support from your provider is essential in ensuring a successful and enjoyable fostering experience, not just for carers but for the children and young people too. If you’re starting out on your fostering journey, here are some things you’ll need to think about when deciding which fostering provider to go for. Children don’t stick to office hours. Support should be available whenever you need it. The life of a foster carer can be unpredictable at times. When you foster, you need to know that you can
Fostering trans young people
Lucy Stevens - 3rd June 2021
7 things trans young people need from their foster carers We know that children and young people in foster care are highly vulnerable and need their foster carers to support and advocate for them. We also know that trans young people are vulnerable to discrimination and oppression. So how should carers prepare for fostering trans young people? What should foster carers know about what it's like to be a trans young person? One could say that generally our society does not treat young people well. Teenagers are often treated with suspicion and criticism and a degree of contempt. For young people in foster care, these attitudes are largely exacerbated. When it comes to fostering trans young people, the challenges can
Tags: foster care, fostering, Fostering Cambridgeshire, fostering Essex, fostering Suffolk, fostering trans young people, how can I foster?, how do I become a foster carer, how to foster, LGBT fostering, trans, transgender
How do Foster Carers support children who have experienced domestic abuse?
Lucy Stevens - 12th April 2021
A high proportion of children who are looked after by foster carers have witnessed some degree of domestic abuse. Exposure to domestic violence is one of the main factors leading to social care involvement in the lives of children and we have seen incidences of domestic abuse increase over the last year during the Covid pandemic. What is domestic abuse? The term domestic abuse covers a range of behaviours which are at their root violent, threatening, controlling or coercive. Often domestic abuse occurs between parents, partners, ex-partners or family members. It can also occur between children and includes: Physical abuseEmotional abuseThreatening behaviourIntimidationSexual abuseFinancial controlCoercion and controlling behaviourForced marriageHonour based violenceOnline or text/ non face to face abuse How does domestic
What is parent and child fostering? A peek into the unknown: parent and child fostering
Lucy Stevens - 22nd March 2021
What is parent and child fostering? When we talk to people about parent and child fostering, they often don’t know that it exists and certainly don’t understand it or consider it a part of the picture they have of fostering. Parent and child fostering involves caring for a mum or dad and their child, often a baby. More often than not, carers will be asked to look after a young mum and her baby, a mum with learning difficulties and baby or an older mum who may have had children removed from their care in the past. Equally they may be asked to look after the dad and baby or both parents and the child. This type of fostering can
Fostering: the simple things change lives
Lucy Stevens - 26th February 2021
Lai and Barrie, Essex We would really recommend fostering. If you are thinking of making the first step, we can testify that fostering changes lives. We took our first step 6 years ago; over that time we have looked after a range of children. Our first child was a teenager. Our role was really to prepare her for independence. She is a lovely girl and just needed gentle guidance and a loving, non-judgemental family. She stayed with us for a year and made so much progress in that time. She continues to be a close friend to our daughter and now has a good job in a hospital and a child of her own! What’s it all about? For us,
Tags: fostering, fostering agency, fostering Essex, fostering support, independent fostering agencies