London Borough of Merton
AFC Wimbledon is backing Merton Council’s fostering fortnight campaign and calling on local residents to consider a career in fostering.
The national campaign kicks off this week and runs until 31 May. It aims to raise awareness of the need for foster carers across Britain.
This year AFC Wimbledon is backing Merton’s fostering fortnight initiatives which call for more people to come forward as foster carers in the borough and celebrate the contribution of those that have.
Paul Lorraine, captain of Wimbledon football club said: ‘Supporting our local community is what a football club is all about and we want to do all we can to help our local children thrive. Merton needs foster carers from all walks of life to become involved.’
On Friday 21 May, a special reception for foster carers will take place at Cannizaro House to celebrate and recognise their hard work and dedication, and the difference they make to many children every year. Council officers will be hosting a stand at Wimbledon’s Centre Court shopping centre on Saturday 22 May to help raise the profile of fostering in the borough and offer information and advice about becoming a foster carer.
Becoming a foster carer can enable parents whose children have left home to earn money using their already well-honed parenting skills. Alternatively, parents with children still at home can gain additional financial support by taking in a foster child and allowing the warmth and security of their family to spread and make a difference to a child’s life.
Yvette Stanley, director for children, schools and families said: “Foster carers have one of the most important, challenging and influential roles in our community. They provide loving and stable homes to children who need them the most.
“There is a national shortage of foster carers and Merton is no exception. The best place for a child who can’t stay with their family is in the warmth and security of a foster family. We need people who think they can offer a child a bedroom in a kind and understanding home to give us a call.’
Merton’s Fostering Service is particularly keen to recruit people who are open to fostering teenagers, children with disabilities whose families need support for just a couple of days or nights a month and children from ethnic minorities. However the need for foster carers is not limited to these groups and foster carers are needed for a wide variety of children from all backgrounds.
Anyone interested in becoming a foster carer should call Merton’s Fostering Team on 020 8545 4277 or visit http://www.merton.gov.uk/fostering