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Younger Foster Carers Needed

More younger people need to be encouraged to foster in order to avoid a recruitment crisis, the Fostering Network has warned, with the publication of survey results showing that almost one in three foster carers are now approaching an age where they may consider retiring.

The survey of 2,600 foster carers found that 30% were aged 55 or above, with another 45% between 45 and 54. In contrast, only 4% were aged 20 to 34.

The results come hot on the heels of an opinion poll carried out by the Fostering Network, which found that only 22% of people aged 18-25 think they would be accepted as foster carers were they to apply within the next two years.

Commenting on the results, chief executive of the Fostering Network Robert Tapsfield said:

“It’s vital that we reach out to more younger people, in their 20s, 30s and early 40s, and are clear that what is important is not age, but rather the skills and qualities to look after fostered children. Younger foster carers will also be in a great position to offer homes to the many children who need to live with a foster family for the long term, often until the age of 21.”

There are currently 52,500 foster families looking after 63,000 children across the UK every day. The Fostering Network estimates that a further 8,600 families are needed this year alone, particularly to look after teenagers and children with disabilities, as well as providing homes to groups of brothers and sisters.

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If you need help with a family law matter, including advice on issues involving children, contact our specialist solicitors on 01224 370 028 or fill in our enquiry form today.

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