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Issue:- 14 February 2013


AT LEAST 9,000 new foster families are needed across the UK during 2013 to look after the record numbers of children in care who need to be fostered, according to figures from the Fostering Network.  Despite the total number of fostering households going up to over 50,000 during the last year, thousands more are still needed as the number of children in care has increased for a sixth year in a row, and is continuing to rise. 

On any one day, there is now a record 61,700 children living with foster families, with thousands more coming in and out of care throughout the year. More foster families are needed to replace the 13% of the workforce who retire or leave every year. These figures show the scale of the challenge facing fostering services as they struggle to provide the right foster homes for all the children who need them.

The charity is warning that without these new families, too many children will fail to get the care they need. Some will live in children's homes when a foster family would be the best option for them. Others will end up living with a foster carer a long way from the child's home, school and family, or a carer who has space but may not have the experience and skills to meet the child's specific needs.  This can put such a strain on relationships that they break down, meaning children are moved around time and time again, suffering even more disruption to their often already traumatic lives. 

Robert Tapsfield, chief executive of the Fostering Network, said:- "Despite fostering services attracting more people to become foster carers, the continuing rise of children coming into care means thousands more are still needed this year alone. In particular we know that fostering services are looking for foster carers to offer homes to teenagers, children with disabilities and sibling groups.  These children need a stable family life to help them grow and achieve their potential. By becoming a foster carer people can help them have the best possible opportunity for a positive future, to do well at school and be successful in later life.  Fostering services are looking for people from all walks of life to become foster carers, of all ages, and from single people to large families. What matters is that they have a desire to work with children and the right skills."

An extra 7,350 foster families are needed in England, 850 in Scotland, 600 in Wales and 200 in Northern Ireland.  To find out more about becoming a foster carer people should contact their local fostering service. They can also visit:- or call Fosterline on:- 0800 040 7675.·

The next meeting of SAFE will be held at the Victoria Methodist Church

THE next meeting of SAFE (Southport Access For Everyone) will be held at the Victoria Methodist Church, Sussex Road, at 7 pm. on Monday, 25 February 2013. Light refreshments will be served before the meeting. Anyone who is interested in disability problems will be welcome. The venue is fully accessible and there is adequate car parking. For further information about S.A.F.E. please consult our website on:-

Make '13' lucky for the NSPCC this March

THE NSPCC is calling on people across Merseyside and the Wirral who are considering swapping their old car for a new '13' registration plate this March, to donate it to them, through the not-for-profit social enterprise Giveacar.

Giveacar has been supporting the NSPCC since January 2010 and in that time has helped to raise £21,000 by accepting donations of cars from members of the public. Completely free of charge, Giveacar will collect your unwanted vehicle, auction it on your behalf and donate the proceeds of the sale to charity. For every car donated, the NSPCC receives 70% of the value.

Money raised through the scheme will enable the NSPCC to reach even more children and families through its services which are delivered via its community-based centres, such as the one based in Liverpool.

Ros Bird, NSPCC corporate fundraising manager explained:- "This is a great scheme; not only does it save you time and hassle but by donating the value of your car you're helping vulnerable children and young people to access services which can help them turn their lives around.  Millions of cars come off the road every year. If you're buying a new car this March, why not donate your old one to the NSPCC? You can donate other items too; exercise equipment like rowing machines; mobility scooters; and ride-on lawnmowers; to name just a few."

Alex Harvey, Manager at Giveacar, said:- "We think it's wonderful that cars that have been protecting children on school runs and holiday breaks can continue to provide protection by funding the NSPCC when it's time to get rid of them."

To find out more about Giveacar and to arrange collection of your old car, visit:- or call:- 0207 736 4242.

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