Leeds City Council is looking for more people who could offer a caring and loving home for children with disabilities.
A new campaign to encourage more people to consider fostering children with disabilities has been launched by Leeds City Council’s complex needs team this week.
Staff members from Leeds City Council’s complex needs team and carers who already look after disabled children were on hand at the White Rose centre today to answer any questions and offer advice to anyone interested in finding out more.
The council is currently looking for people who could provide all types of foster care for children with a variety of physical difficulties and learning disabilities. Carers are needed who can take children both long and short term, for short breaks or for day care.
Although there is no one particular type of person who makes a good foster carer for a child with disabilities, many carers do have past experience of looking after disabled children. Sometimes this is in their own families or through working with disabled children in schools, as school escorts, nursing professions, speech therapists, or play therapists, but what is most important is that they can provide a safe, secure and stimulating experience for the child.
The short breaks and day care scheme offers home from home care with lots of opportunities for disabled children to make new friends and have opportunities to undertake different activities. It also enables the children’s families and full time carers time away from their caring role.
Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, executive member for children and families said:
“Foster carers provide an invaluable service to the city, giving a stable and supportive home to children in care, as well as being there to provide respite for families whose children have more complex needs.
“In our child friendly city we put all children at their heart of everything we do so we are looking for families who can offer these children, not only a caring and loving home, but also a place where they can grow and reach their full potential.
“We would urge anyone interested in finding out more about being a foster carer for a disabled child to contact the complex needs team who will be able to answer any questions they have.”
When a child is matched to a carer stays are arranged to fit the needs of the child and their family, as well as the foster family. These stays are usually at weekends but could be day care, week stays or occasionally longer. The children gain new experiences whilst their family have chance to recharge their batteries. Some children need longer term care, so carers are also needed who can dedicate more time to look after a child on a long term basis.
To enable carers to look after children with specific needs, Leeds City Council may be able to offer adaptations to be carried out in their home.
Each carer is supported by a fostering complex needs social worker who will meet on a regular basis to discuss the children placed with them. Training is also offered to all short breaks carers.
People who are interested in becoming a short breaks foster carer in their own home can contact the team though the fostering web-site www.foster4leeds.co.uk or by telephone the recruitment team on 0113 247 7443. For further information people can contact the complex needs fostering service on 0113 378 3536 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.