Barnsley Council’s fostering team have dedicated their summer to attending a number of events across the borough as part of an initiative to attract more Barnsley carers for Barnsley children.
Wearing their noticeable green t-shirts, the Barnsley’s fostering team, accompanied by many of their current carers have set up stalls at many of the local galas and community fairs in Royston, Worsbrough, Grimethorpe and Carlton. They've also attended the town centre LGBT uncovered project, Pride, the Barnsley Town Centre Races and Barnsley FC open day to speak to the public to encourage people to consider foster care and answer any questions they may have. They have even looked to channel their inner Mary Berry, giving out buns at the Cannon Hall Food Festival!
The objective has been clear from the start; Barnsley fostering is in need of more foster carers, in particular, long term carers and carers interested in looking after Barnsley’s teenagers who are in need of care. By attending a range of events, the team have been able to talk to a variety of people, dispel myths around fostering and through our carers, show how much joy can come from fostering.
Cllr Margaret Bruff, Cabinet Spokesperson for People (Safeguarding), said: “We’ve had a real push this summer to attend a variety of events to capture a range of different people. This has helped us to demonstrate that anybody can foster, it doesn’t matter if you’re single, have religious beliefs, are LGBT, or even have a minor criminal conviction, anybody can foster.
“At these events, we’ve had both fostering staff and our carers who are all passionate about encouraging more people to become Barnsley carers for Barnsley children. Therefore, it’s no surprise that we’ve seen a great amount of interest in the past two months. When people can listen to foster carers and see how much joy they get from doing it, it’s so inspiring.”
Although the number of events available for fostering to attend decreases as we say goodbye to summer, Barnsley fostering will still be looking to encourage more people to consider fostering and will be at the Destination Barnsley Festival at Shaw Lane Sports Centre this Sunday.
Additionally, Fostering Barnsley holds monthly information evenings at the town hall. Anybody can attend, and it provides a fantastic opportunity to ask any questions to either current carers or members of the team. The next information evening is on Wednesday 27 September at the Town Hall at 6.30pm to 8.30pm.