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Fostering support

Financial support

Money

Foster carers receive a weekly allowance for each child which varies according to the age of the child. For the 2018-19 financial year, the amount varies from £130 to £191 per week dependant on the age of child.

In addition, Foster Carers receive a weekly fee for the first child placed and 70% of the full fee for subsequent children in placement at the same time. At present, our carers receive £110 for a child aged under 11 years and £120 for a young person aged 11 years plus.

For some young people with particularly challenging behaviour an additional support package may be available.

Foster carers also receive an annual holiday grant, Christmas/festival and birthday allowances in respect of a foster child.

Carers who offer regular short planned break care receive a proportion of the weekly allowance and fee depending upon the period of care given.

For more information about the financial rewards available please call our team on 0800 9555 311.

Practical support and benefits for Bury Foster Carers

We also recognise the importance of offering ongoing practical support.

Buddying service

At Bury we offer all newly approved foster carers a Buddy to support them in the first months of fostering. The aim of this service is for newly approved foster carers to get support from more experienced carers when they start their fostering career.

A Buddy is a foster carer who has been fostering for at least 2 years. They can be a general foster carer, short break foster carer or a home from home carer, they will offer support and guidance about the fostering role. They will also contact you regarding training and other events and be a source of support and information.

We also see the Buddy scheme as a route of progression of our more experienced foster carers who want to develop their skills by supporting less experienced foster carers.

The Buddy scheme is a great way of introducing new carers to the role of Fostering.

Foster carers Association

Foster Carers Association is open to all our approved carers in Bury. It is an opportunity for our carers to get involved with a range of recruitment events as well as to share ideas with the team to help develop and improve our service.

The Association meets regularly - for more information, either speak to your supervising social worker or contact the team on 0800 9555 311 for details.

Pre-approval training

Following an initial home visit, we then invite those interested in fostering to attend our Pre-Approval "Skills to Foster" training. The training sessions take place bi-monthly and usually take place over three consecutive Saturdays and one evening session.

Please see below for a full list of our training dates for 2018.

  • February
    • Dates: 24th, 3rd, and 10th March plus an evening session on 7th March
    • Details: Saturday sessions run from 10am to 4pm, evening session 6.30pm to 9.00pm
    May
    • Dates: 12th, 19th and 26th May plus an evening session on 22nd May
    • Details: Saturday sessions run from 10am to 4pm, evening session 6.30pm to 9.00pm

Post approval training

We offer training of a high quality delivered by knowledgeable professionals in their field of expertise. Once approved you will be invited to complete our post approval training programme.

We offer training both daytime and evening sessions and often are able to provide a creche or will support with childcare costs. Our training programme is varied and offers excellent training courses from our team and other external multi-agency partners. Below is a list of some of the courses we run. 

  • Safeguarding training for children - delivered by staff from Bury's Area Child Protection Board and looks at the impact of abuse on children and young people.
  • Promoting education - delivered by our dedicated Looked After Children's Education team and focuses on the education needs of both primary and secondary education.
  • Promoting health - delivered by Bury's Looked After Children's Nurse and focuses on staying healthy, signs and symptoms of ill health and communicable diseases, prevention and control.
  • Paediatric first aid - this training is delivered by a highly reputable organisation and focuses on the techniques to deliver first aid and baby and child resuscitation.
  • Contact for children and their parents - this training is delivered by safeguarding and fostering team social workers and contact officers. It takes a holistic approach to the issues and impacts surrounding contact for looked after children with their parents and family members.
  • Record training - delivered by experienced fostering social workers. This training supports foster carers to record appropriate and accurate information, provides information of data protection and differing formats and arena's in which this information may be used or called upon.
  • Attachment - caring for children with disruptive life experiences - delivered by Bury's looked after children's child psychologist and the child and adolescent mental health team. This training focuses on the issues of attachment and how this relates to children in foster care.

Birth children's groups

The "children who foster group" known as the CWF Group, is for the children of our foster carers, a support group for the young people who are foster carers in their own right.

The group discusses issues on fostering and any areas they feel they need support. It is also fun with good interaction from all the young people who attend.

The group is held every other month from 4.30pm to 6.30pm, refreshments are provided. We also have two outings each year, chosen by the young people.

One of our young people have said this about the group:

"I have attended the CWF group since I was 8 years old, I am now 16 years old. I am an active member of the group and I would like to see more children to come along and join us".

At the CWF group it gives a chance for foster carers' children to share their thoughts, feelings or worries about all aspects of fostering, as you may feel you are sharing your home life, mum and dad with another child".

Existing carers - please contact us to find out the dates of our meetings in 2018.

Twice yearly parties

Each year, we hold a Summer and Christmas party for all of our children and foster carers. It's a great social event and thoroughly enjoyed by everyone.

Keep a look out in our newsletter for the next party dates or alternatively, log into our secure Foster Carers area for more information.

Training courses

Fostering is a professional career and we understand the importance of offering a wide range of training courses to our foster carers. Topics covered include autism, safeguarding children, promoting education and recording training as well as a range of online training modules.

For details of the courses being held over the next few months, log into our secure area and register your interest.

Community events

Supported Lodgings Community Recruitment Event

Come to our next community event at The Rock, Bury (near to Barista coffee bar) on Saturday 29 October from 10am to 4pm to find out about the role of supported lodgings carer. Could you be a mentor? Do you have a spare room? Could you support and prepare a young person with the skills needed to prepare for independent living?  If so, Supported Lodgings could be for you. Come down, meet the team and pick up some information.

Support groups

The day time foster carer support group is held every other month from 9.30am to 11.30am with a crèche provided. We meet in a Children's Family Centre in the local area which provides a relaxed environment with excellent child care facilities. Speakers are invited to discuss specific topics of the fostering role such as baby massage, healthy eating , managing difficult behaviour, autism, moving children on, allegations to name but a few. This is then followed by questions and answers with discussions between other foster carers of any issues they need support with. When speakers are not in attendance the foster carers take advantage of having a relaxed morning being able to buddy up and seek mutual support as they share their anxieties. They also have the opportunity of seeking professional advice from the supervising social workers who attend the group. We would love to see new and experienced foster carers join the group who could enjoy the benefits of added support with other foster carers in sharing their experiences and knowledge.

The evening support group is held every other month, from 7pm until 9pm. Speakers are invited to discuss specific topics of fostering e.g. Independent living for young people, managing difficult behaviour, moving children on, separation and loss, and allegations, to name but a few. This is then followed by questions and answers with discussions between other foster carers of any issues they need support with. Everyone is made welcome and refreshments are provided. One regular foster carer of many years has said this about the group: "Fostering Support Groups are arranged by the fostering team and aim to give support on various dates of the year in the evening, this is done in a relaxed setting. I have attended on various occasions and found the topics all helpful and interesting in all aspects of fostering. It also gives you a chance to meet other foster carers. Topics covered have been the adoption process, family finding, Autism, ADHD, healthy eating, and health issues. I urge other carers to come along to the groups and enjoy the benefits of added support with other foster carers in sharing their experiences and knowledge."