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Anti-Bullying Week 2023 – Make A Noise About Bullying

November 13th – 17th is Anti-Bullying week 2023 and this year’s theme is ‘Make A Noise About Bullying’. Founded by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, anti-bullying week was established to encourage schools, parents, children and caregivers to come together and discuss the issue of bullying. 

At Focus Foster Care, we are dedicated to helping children to enjoy their childhoods as much as possible and we are all too aware that looked after children are one of the more vulnerable groups when it comes to bullying. This Anti-Bullying Week, we are sharing some eye-opening statistics about looked after children and foster care and also have a list of places children can turn to for support.

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The Benefits of a Foster Talk Membership

At Focus Foster Care. We are proud to support all of our foster carers to provide the best possible care for the children and young people that they look after. Part of this support includes a membership to foster talk. Foster talk was set up in 2004 and is recognised as the go to organisation for fostering advice, practical guidance and independent support for both foster carers and fostering services.

We understand that fostering can be challenging and many carers may be learning as they go. To best support our team of carers on their fostering journey, we believe having access to the professionals at Foster Talk can be highly beneficial.

If you are new to the world of foster care and have never heard of Foster Talk before, keep reading to find out the many benefits of this membership.

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11 Things Children Want To Know Before Joining a Fostering Family

Here on the Focus Foster Care blog, we talk a lot about the realities of life as a foster carer and share our advice for people considering a fostering career. We have interviewed several our foster carers, sharing their experiences and words of wisdom. Through our ‘Meet the Team’ series, our social workers and office staff have shared their thoughts on foster care and the importance of supporting everyone involved in creating the best possible outcomes. We have also shared the valuable insights of some of the children we look after and the thoughts of our foster carers birth children too. This blog provides a wealth of information for potential and existing foster carers and today we are thrilled to be sharing the voices of more children in our ‘fostering family’.

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Meet The Team – Jenna, Supervising Social Worker

Welcome back to Meet The Team, our blog series dedicated to the amazing people working at Focus Foster Care. We have recently had a new supervising social worker join the team. Jenna started her role here at Focus at the beginning of August and is already a valued member of the Focus family.

Our Meet The Team interviews are an opportunity for our new and potential foster carers to get to know the people who work hard to make Focus Foster Care the successful independent fostering agency that it is today. We are a small yet passionate team and every single member of staff is committed to providing children and foster carers with the best support possible. We are excited to welcome Jenna aboard and hope that you enjoy getting to know our new supervising social worker.

Now, over to Jenna…

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Foster Care Fortnight 2023 – Our Fostering Community

It is Foster Care Fortnight, the annual campaign run by The Fostering Network. The purpose of Foster Care Fortnight is to raise the profile of fostering and highlight the important role foster carers play in the lives of children and young people in care. After the success of last year’s campaign, The Fostering Network decided on the same theme for this year – #FosteringCommunities.

They say it takes a village to raise a child and the same is true with foster care. For fostering to be a success, a whole community of people must be involved. At Focus, we have a family focussed approach to fostering and we believe in building strong relationships with our fostering families. We are here for our carers and the children they look after at every stage, working together to provide the best possible outcomes.

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Student Social Worker Placement – Farewell and Good Luck to Sophie! 

At Focus Foster Care we are passionate about supporting children, families and foster carers in the West Midlands area. As well providing foster care to those in need, we also support student social workers by offering placements to university students.  

Sophie is our most recent student social worker and joined the Focus family in November 2022. As her time with us draws to an end, we want to wish Sophie good luck with the rest of her studies and for her future career in social work.  

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The journey to becoming foster carers – What is life as a fostering family really like?

Welcome back to our Journey to Becoming Foster Carers blog series. In this three-part series, we are interviewing our newest foster carers – Sarah and Ross. In the first interview, Sarah and Ross shared their experience of the application and assessment process, you can read that post here. If you want to know a little more about what life as a fostering family is really like, this second interview is a must read.  

Life as a fostering family can have its challenges, just like all family dynamics do. Fostering can be hard work and can be demanding at times, but looking after children is also immensely rewarding. Do you want a closer look behind the scenes of life as a fostering family? If so, keep on reading, Sarah and Ross have provided a candid look at life as a fostering family.  

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The journey to becoming foster carers – Experience of the assessment process

Focus Foster Care is growing. We are regularly welcoming new foster carers to our team, and we hope to see even more carers join us in 2023. In December 2022, Ross and Sarah became our newest fostering family and we recently sat down together for a chat about their experience so far, as first-time foster carers. Sarah and Ross have two birth children, a girl and a boy, and are also fostering two siblings (another boy and girl). Sarah is a teaching assistant and Ross works on an ad hoc basis as a funeral director, he reduced his work hours so he could fully commit to fostering.

Sarah and Ross were extremely generous with their time and knowledge, and have shared everything they have been through, right from why they decided to foster up until having their first children placed with them in December. If you are thinking of starting a career in foster care and want to know more about becoming a foster carer, this new blog series is for you.

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3 reasons to foster in 2023

Have you been thinking about becoming a foster carer? If so, we are glad to hear it. Thinking about becoming a foster carer is the first step to helping children in your local area. More foster carers than ever before are needed here in the UK, and it’s time to stop thinking about it and to start your fostering journey. Here are 3 reasons why 2023 should be the year that you finally join our team and become a foster carer.

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Is it time for a change? – How to transfer to Focus Foster Care