Fostering News | February 2021 - coronavirus vaccine update | Training opportunities | Fostering news updates and more.

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Fostering News


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Welcome to the February edition of Fostering News. We hope this email finds you safe and well (if not a little bored of lockdown life!). We have some updates and news for you including information on Coronavirus vaccines for foster carers, a look back at our Sherwood Forest event one year on, as well as some upcoming Zoom training that has a few spaces left for the taking. Happy reading 😊

Vaccines for carers


The staff within the fostering service are now being invited to have the Coronavirus vaccine and Steve Edwards emailed all foster carers last Friday with an update about foster carers having theirs (please keep an eye on your emails). You can read the full letter here if you missed it.

“Depending on the national supply of vaccine, we hope to be able to begin to start vaccinating all foster carers from the 15 February. However, there is a possibility that we may be able to do this sooner, as occasionally vaccine slots can become available at short notice. All Nottinghamshire County Council foster carers are now on a “reserve list” and should we have an “over supply” of vaccine you will be contacted via email and provided with a vaccine booking link. The link will allow you to book a vaccination slot, on a first come first served basis. When you go for your vaccination you must take proof of eligibility with you, we will include a letter of eligibility when we share the link with you.“

Steve Edwards, Service Director, Youth Families and Social Work

Looking back - one year on

drone image showing birds-eye view of children making the shape of 200
Foster carers stood with Councillor Rostance at Sherwood Forest event

Unbelievably it's been a whole year since we held our event at Sherwood Forest, which launched our campaign to recruit 200 foster carers! As you know, foster carers are still needed urgently across Nottinghamshire to provide children in care with a safe and nurturing home.

Since the launch of the campaign on 12 February 2020, we've all had to deal with how the Coronavirus has impacted our lives - including people who were considering applying to become foster carers. The pandemic has undoubtedly had an impact on recruitment for foster carers, where some who were considering fostering have put those plans on hold, others have wanted to give back to the community and applied to foster.

Now, we want to appeal to those people who are currently in a position to foster where they haven't been before.

Lots of people's lives and outlooks have changed since the first lockdown, including those who aren't currently working due to furlough and redundancy, and those who have been working from home and want to continue spending more time at home in a family environment rather than go back to work full time (when allowed).

If you know anyone who could be in a position to foster, please encourage them to think about fostering and get in touch us. Your encouragement could be the push they need to enquire about fostering!

You may see an increase in our fostering messages over the next couple of weeks in the form of social media posts and adverts, newspaper articles, adverts in NG Magazines and digital advertising. If you do see our social media posts, please show support with likes, comments and shares if you feel comfortable doing so. A comment on one of our posts from a foster carer could really encourage someone who is considering fostering!

If you don't already, please follow our fostering Facebook page, thank you!

Read our news story which looks back at the Sherwood event and ongoing need for foster carers in Nottinghamshire.

Read story

Therapeutic Foster Care in Focus

A message from Melissa Blockley, DDP Practitioner and Social Work Practice Consultant (Therapeutic):

"The Polyvagal theory provides a helpful way of considering the impact of trauma on our autonomic nervous system.  It explores  the role of the vagus nerve in emotion regulation, social connection and fear response. 

"The theory offers us a way of 'mapping' where, not only the children and young people we work with/care for are, but also how we (as the adults) are responding to our environments and relationships with others.   This social engagement theory was developed by Stephen Porges and is very current in clinical practice.  As a fostering service we are developing a trauma informed understanding and approach in our work with children and young people .

"The Polyvagal theory contributes towards our understanding of some of the behaviours that we observe in ourselves and others.  What is important to consider is the stressful impact of the pandemic on us all as we try and navigate our way through this while also having other responsibilities to manage.

"There are two YouTube clips below - the first clip is 'A Polyvagal guided approach to understanding trauma' and the second clip considers how we can refer to the Polyvagal theory when exploring the impact of the pandemic /social distancing measures on our sense of isolation.  These are presented by Deb Dana who explains this theory in an easily accessible way."

Polyvagal theory and trauma (Deb Dana)

Befriending your nervous system (Deb Dana)

OFSTED survey

Ofsted would like to hear your views about the establishment or agency that you foster for. Here is the link to an anonymous online survey. This survey is open from 1 February to 28 March 2021. If you have any questions about the survey, you can contact Ofsted at: or call 0300 123 1231.

It should take you just a few minutes to complete:

Ofsted survey

Mileage claims

The payments team would like to remind foster carers to please submit your millage claims within the 6 month timescale, otherwise they may not be able to process them. Make sure you submit to avoid missing out on your mileage claims! Thank you.

Retirement announcement

text on image says retirement

After 37 years, Lynn and Roger Martindale from the North Team have decided it is time to retire from fostering.

Throughout their fostering career, Lynn and Roger have presented as extremely child-focussed, empathetic and emotionally warm carers, to the children in their care.  Many children who have been in their care remain in touch with the couple into adulthood and the couple continue to offer a supportive relationship to many care leavers. Many children who came for support care always asked to go back as they were made to feel very comfortable, relaxed and welcomed as part of their family. This is to the couple’s credit and devotion to their fostering role of supporting children who were or are looked after.

They are very dedicated carers and will be missed by the fostering service. We would like to wish them well in their future endeavours and give our huge thanks to them for all the support they have provided, including the positive impact they have had on the many children’s lives as foster carers for Nottinghamshire County Council.

Read Lynn's thoughts and feelings as she reflects on their time as foster carers:

Lynn and Roger's retirement message

Some of you may be aware that Ian Tabberer, team manager for the Fostering Futures team, is also retiring after many good years of service for Nottinghamshire County Council. He will officially retire on 3 March. We wish him all the best for a long and happy retirement!

Upcoming training

adult and child using tablet

You can book the following training courses via My Learning, My Career:

  • Training support and development standards workbook support, virtual drop in session – various dates February and March 2021
  • Foster Carer - Assisting & Moving Refresher Childrens (Short Breaks & Mainstream) – 22 February 2021
  • NSCP Child Sexual Exploitation “Grooming and the Police Role" 2020/21 Level 3  -  4 March 2021
  • Foster Carers Tax Return virtual workshop - 11 March 2021
  • Foster Carer - Assisting & Moving Refresher Childrens Short Breaks & Mainstream       – 11 March 2021
  • Foster Care Introduction to PACE – 11 March 2021

Should all places be booked, please show your interest by booking on the reserve list -  this will inform the commissioning of further events. Thank you.

Don't forget about our foster carer's website!

Please remember to make use of foster carers website which is designed especially for our you, filled with useful advice, information and latest news!

Why not add it to your bookmarks so it's easy to access in the future? To do this, click on the link below, then click on the star in your browser bar to add it to your bookmarks/favourites.

Visit the website