Fostering News | December Update

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Fostering News


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Welcome to December’s edition of Fostering News. In this final newsletter of 2021 we have a special message from service director, Steve Edwards, as well our annual roll of honour list of carers and finally a reminder about the foster carer survey. Happy reading and a merry Christmas to you all 😊

🎉 Roll of Honour 2021 🎉

10 years’ service

Jo and Lee Yearwood
Claire Haslam
Joanne Bryan
Teresa and David Guy
Kathryn Grant
Yvonne Chapman
Michelle Willis
Sam and Paul Marriott
Jan and Cliff Thompson
Wendy Cannon and Phil Ledger
Lesley and George Drew

15 years’ service

Stella Taylor
Sarah and Phil Brelsford
Steve and Christine Birchnall
Julie Harrison
Nicola and Ian Shemwell
Phil Watson
Tracey and Kevin Polley
Jane Moles
Kellie Ashton
Helen Wardle and John Stubbs

20 years’ service

Sharon and Steve Mathers
Shirley Green
Dane Maloney

25 years’ service

Tracy and Paul Benson
Karen and Denis Overton
Sharon and Mark Payne


A huge congratulations to all of our carers reaching milestones this year!

Next year we will be holding our bi-annual long service celebratory lunch and inviting all those carers who should have been at our cancelled 2020 event to join us for a big celebration.  We are in the very early stages of planning this event, however invitations will be sent out in the Spring.


Foster carers' survey

A button on a computer keyboard with text, online survey

Last month we emailed you all to enquire about additional capacity and to enable us to learn more about the availability within our carer community. We have had some really insightful responses and I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to reply. We have read and collated them all, and where appropriate, I will respond to those issues raised and action them accordingly.

The annual foster carer survey is currently live for carers to participate in. This survey offers a comprehensive view and wider insight into all areas of the fostering service, including anything we do well and any areas that need improving. I would encourage you all to take part and have your voices heard as the responses are used to further develop the service. As a thank you for taking the time to participate you will be entered into a prize draw to win a £50 love2shop voucher.

With thanks and best wishes for the New Year,

Ty Yousaf
Service Manager   

Complete the survey


A person at a laptop on a video meeting

The next quarterly FLAG meeting will be held via Microsoft Teams on Monday 10 January at 7pm.

The Fostering Liaison Advisory Group  is YOUR meeting. All foster carers are invited to attend and hear the latest updates from the service as well as providing you with an opportunity to raise important issues with the senior managers. If you are able to attend we’d love to see you there.

Click here to join the meeting

Opportunities for your young people

A group of young people

Rootz is a new theatre group for young people with care experience, who love the arts and want to develop their own creative work for ages 13 – 21. Please contact Nottingham Playhouse to find out more.


Nottingham Trent University Next Steps has an event on 7th December for any care experienced students who may be thinking about degree apprenticeships and wanting to know more. Please complete this link with your young person to register their interest. 

Explore University - December 2021

There are some courses with availability for a January start with Inspire Training for 16-24 year olds. The courses and enrolment details can be found here 

College Courses for Young People (16-24 Year Olds)

The Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Person filling in a survey

The Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy is Nottinghamshire’s plan for improving the health and wellbeing of our residents, and for reducing health inequalities. Good health is an asset for individuals and communities. Health inequalities are unfair and avoidable differences in health between different groups of people.

There is a specific survey to get the views of children. If you have a child living with you then please encourage them to share their views by following the link below.

Complete the survey

Thank you, Foster Carers! - A message from our Service Director

Dear Nottinghamshire Foster Carers,

I hope that you are all well? As another Christmas approaches, I want to take the opportunity to thank you for everything you do to support the children in your care.

Having been brought up in a family who fostered I know first-hand how challenging and rewarding fostering can be. I have really enjoyed virtually meeting with many of you over the last year at various meetings, listening to what is going well and hearing what we as a Service could do better. I am pleased that so many of you were able to join us for the virtual foster carer conference and at virtual Flag meetings. So many of you have supported one another during the pandemic and I am grateful to all of you for caring for so many of Nottinghamshire’s looked after children.

Fostering is hard work at the best of times and I know from meeting some of you that it has been incredibly difficult over the last two years, the losses and challenges we have all experienced will live with us for a long time to come.

We are not out of the woods just yet; we need to continue to be safe and remain vigilant. However, I do think there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Hopefully we will eventually emerge stronger, both collectively and individually.

Perhaps because my parents fostered, I share that view of Sir John Timpson (a foster carer himself for many years, some of you will remember John’s speech at our first fostering conference) that the best people to support foster carers are foster carers.

I therefore hope that in the New Year we will build on the work we have started to establish fostering support hubs, bring groups of foster carers together and providing them with guidance and support from our supervising social workers.

We will also continue to roll out our therapeutic training to all foster carers, I am pleased that 50% of are foster carers have had therapeutic training already.

In 2022 we will continue with our drive to recruit more Nottinghamshire foster carers, our children really need you, now more than ever, too many of our children end up in high cost Independent fostering placements sometimes a distance away from Nottinghamshire. I was struck when I read a recent Competition and Markets Authority Interim Report into the Children’s Social Care Market, dated 22nd October 2021, which states.

 “there is evidence that some prices and profits in the sector are above the levels we would expect in a well-functioning market”

The report goes onto say.

“For fostering we found that the average price per child that local authorities pay for independent provision from the largest providers is higher than the cost of their in-house provision, reflecting both higher independent sector operating costs and the existence of a profit margin in the independent sector”.

It seems wrong to me (this is a personal view) that private companies should make a profit from Council Tax money which should be spent on vulnerable children, I know that my mum and dad  didn’t foster to make someone a profit. Let’s hope that we can grow our Nottinghamshire Fostering Community in 2022 and therefore ensure that we are spending Council Tax money on vulnerable children and not on profit for large private organisations. 

Thank you for fostering for Nottinghamshire County Council, for everything you do for the children in your care. I hope that you all enjoy the festive period, I wish you all a very happy Christmas and a fantastic 2022 and I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the next Flag meeting on 10th January.

Happy Christmas.

Steve Edwards
Service Director of Childrens Social Care

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