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20 ways foster carers are supported

  1. Each foster carer has a dedicated local Social Worker who they can go to for advice about the children in their care
  2. Our Social workers have manageable caseloads, so they have enough time to support you when fostering
  3. We value your birth children as part of making fostering a success and offer one-to-one time with a local outreach worker as well as support groups for birth children to support them with fostering
  4. There is regular on-going training that is undertaken locally – we won’t disrupt your life by making you travel into another county for training
  5. You can tap into support groups and meet other foster carers who have years of experience
  6. We have a network of fostering ambassadors, some of whom have been fostering for decades, who can help you
  7. We are at the end of a help-line 24 hours a day managed by Social workers in our fostering service, seven days a week should you need our support
  8. We take into account the types of children who would be best suited to your home environment and the final decision is down to you whether you feel you can look after them
  9. Foster carers need breaks, too. That is why you will receive up to 28 days’ paid holiday, leaving you free to recharge your batteries and giving you a break from looking after the foster children in your care
  10. Fostering is a vocation and it is lifechanging to children in care. That is why we offer financial support in the shape of fees so you can afford to follow your passion and change the life of a child
  11. We will give you membership to the Essex Foster Carers’ Association (EFCA)
  12. If you become a foster carer and refer a friend who then becomes a foster carer, you will be awarded £1,030. We expect up to 500 children to come into care in a 12-month period so finding new carers is important
  13. We provide therapeutic support for carers of children who have experienced trauma or neglect
  14. We can also provide greater financial backing for carers to extend their homes in order to look after more children
  15. You can access clinical psychologists for the children in your care
  16. There are mental health co-ordinators that can be accessed should you feel that your foster child needs this support, so that this, in turn, can help you parent them
  17. Training is tailored to the individual needs of foster carers and includes online training
  18. Essex County Council offers annual training modules. Our Fostering Changes programme enables carers to obtain skills and strategies to manage the behaviours of looked-after children, which can include their reactions to loss and separation
  19. You can benefit from our Oasis network, which brings foster carers together with more experienced carers who can mentor them, offer breaks to carers and their young people, and are an extended part of your fostering of a young person
  20. Essex County Council foster carers can join our Essex Extras employee benefit scheme and receive hundreds of discounts across major brands such as John Lewis, Argos, National Trust, Debenhams, Wicks, Odeon and many more

or to talk to our friendly recruitment team call 0800 801 530