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Urgent need for more foster carers in Suffolk willing to take in sibling groups

PUBLISHED: 22:03 05 December 2017 | UPDATED: 22:16 05 December 2017

Suffolk county councillor Gordon Jones is urging people to come forward to foster vulrenable children. Picture: JAMES FLETCHER

Suffolk county councillor Gordon Jones is urging people to come forward to foster vulrenable children. Picture: JAMES FLETCHER

Archant

Council chiefs in Suffolk are desperately searching for families who can give vulnerable children a loving home amid a foster carer recruitment crisis.

More than 750 children currently live in care in the county and there is an urgent need for more people to come forward to foster, particularly for sibling groups.

Suffolk County Council has launched a recruitment campaign to try and address the problem and encourage more residents who believe they can make a positive difference to the lives of needy children to come forward.

Two fosters carers in Suffolk have spoken about why they decided to take in groups of siblings.

Margi, from Newmarket, said: “We feel they have lost enough as it is coming away from their parents. It is very difficult to find people who will take all of them and we can’t bear the thought of them being split up, that is why we always say yes, we will take a sibling group.”

Mother-of-four Margi, whose milkman suggested she should look into fostering, has previously homed a sibling group of two brothers and two sisters.

“We just love all of it, nothing phases us,” Margi added.

Pat, from Eye, added: “After our first set of siblings we thought it was such a rewarding thing to do, that is why we’ve tried to carry on doing sibling groups.

“I think someone should become a foster carer for siblings because there are not enough carers out there that do siblings groups and I think it is a shame that siblings can’t stay together in placement.”

Gordon Jones, cabinet member for children’s services, education and skills at Suffolk County Council, said: “We are looking for people who have the patience and compassion to provide some of the most vulnerable members of our society with the secure and stable home life they need.

“Being removed from your family can be very scary and being separated from your brother or sister can add to the distress of the children. Siblings usually find it much easier to settle into their new placement if they are kept together and this can also help with educational achievements. By offering them a home together, as a foster carer you are supporting their emotional wellbeing.”

Anyone interested in becoming a foster carer in Suffolk should call 01473 264800 or visit the fostering website.

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