Lucy Stevens - 4th December 2023
We always believed we were outstanding but now it’s official!
All fostering providers are governed by legislation, regulation, standards and statutory guidance. To ensure they comply with these regulations and standards, they are inspected by Ofsted, the regulatory and inspection body.
A long week
Amongst other institutions, Ofsted also inspects schools, nurseries, childcare providers and Local Authority children’s services. It’s not uncommon for some of these organisations to have an inspection over 1 or 2 days. For small, independent agencies, the inspection generally lasts a whole working week.
The team at Eastern Fostering Services was feeling positive when the notification of inspection was received, but we knew that every file, every process, every decision would be under the microscope. This was, of course, a big deal for us as we believed we really deserved recognition for the hard work and commitment we put into our children and carers.
First class feedback
As part of the inspection, the inspector asked for feedback from our carers, our children and young people and from other professionals who work with us. The inspector later said that she had been overwhelmed by the quantity and quality of feedback we received.
We were so touched that several of our young people came in to speak to the inspector face to face to share their views about us as a team.
“I feel protected because there is so much experience in Eastern Fostering Services, they are all about the children as well as looking at how best to help us.”Foster carer
A worthy verdict
The inspector judged Eastern Fostering Services to be Outstanding.
“The independent agency provides highly effective services that consistently exceed the standards of good. The actions of the fostering agency contribute to significantly improved outcomes and positive experiences for children and young people.”Ofsted 2023
So why are Eastern Fostering Services Outstanding?
We have been judged as outstanding because we provide outstanding care and support to our children and foster carers.
We find loving, well-matched homes for children and young people where they feel accepted and nurtured and where the carers are supported comprehensively and creatively.
“If it wasn’t for them (EFS) I wouldn’t have my family.”EFS Child.
All of our children are in education and are making brilliant progress. Eastern Fostering Services advocates for all our children to access any additional educational support services they may need.
We also offer:
- A dedicated 16+ worker who has introduced a structured independence pathway to support young people as they enter adulthood
- A nurture lead to support carers
- A young mentor to support birth children
- A forum for children and young people that allows them to shape services according to their wishes
- Therapeutic training and development for carers
- Child-centred practice, decision making and advocacy
“Children enjoy trusting relationships with adults who they can share any worries with and who they trust to fight their corner.”Ofsted 2023
And although as a team, we have grown, our carers unanimously stated that we have maintained the supportive family feel which enables us to retain our carers.
Do you want to be part of a team that makes an outstanding difference in the lives of children?
Ask us about fostering today.