New fees announced for Harlow foster carers

Communities / Mon 16th Jan 2023 at 09:01am

THE fees Essex County Council pays its in-house foster carers will increase as part of a commitment to supporting foster carers. It recognises the vital contribution of carers in providing young people with safe, secure and nurturing homes and makes fostering an affordable option.

The decision means that all carers’ fees will be increased by approximately 9% and this will be backdated to 1 October 2022.

Foster carers receive a fee payment as well as an allowance to cover the expenses of caring for a child such as food and clothes. Allowances are above the Government’s recommended level and increase each year in line with the inflation rate.

Cllr Beverley Egan, Essex County Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Early Years said: “This increase in fees not only expresses our gratitude to foster carers and supported lodgings carers for the amazing work they do but also demonstrates our commitment to ensuring the best outcomes for all children and young people.

“Essex County Council needs more people to foster and we welcome carers from a wide variety of backgrounds to match the needs of a wide variety of children. Age, marital status, sexual orientation, disability and working outside of the home are not barriers to fostering.”

The role of the foster carer is to provide a safe, secure and loving home to a child or young person, sometimes this is short term, it can also be long-term, until a child is an adult.

In Essex foster families are carefully matched with children to suit their individual circumstances and every carer has an allocated social worker and 24/7 access to support to help them manage outside of office hours.

Essex County Council offers outstanding additional support to carers. This includes the OASIS network (an extended family model of support) clinical leads and mental health workers to help carers understand children’s behaviour and outreach workers to provide practical support. Carers can access an extensive range of support groups and a comprehensive training programme to learn how to provide therapeutic parenting to all children they care for.

To find out more about fostering visit www.essexadoptionandfostering.co.uk/fostering or call: 0800 801 530.

There are also regular information events with the next one being held online on Saturday 28 January.

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