Pay rise for ‘specialist’ foster carers in West Sussex

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Foster carers who support parents and children will be paid more by West Sussex County Council.

The new payment rate of £724 per week has been announced as part of a campaign to recruit people with ‘specialist skills’, to meet demand for the service.

Parent and child foster carers support a parent – often, but not always, a young mother – to look after their child or children in a safe and nurturing environment, helping them become more independent.

Sarah from Worthing – who can’t be named for confidentiality reasons – has been a parent and child foster carer for several years and currently supports a young mother and her baby.

“Typically, a parent and child placement lasts for 14 weeks and it can be full-on,” said Sarah.

“However, for me it is the most rewarding job that you could do.

“Knowing that you have played such an important part in the parent and child’s lives – supporting them and giving them the fairest chance of staying together – is wonderful.”

This type of fostering can involve taking detailed notes, attending court hearings and liaising with professionals as well as providing constant support to both the parent and child.

Peter Evans, county council cabinet member for Children, Start of Life, said: “We are keen to find more people like Sarah who have a spare room, childcare experience and good advocacy skills so that we can meet the demand for parent and child placements.

“The increased payment will enable people with the appropriate skills to consider parent and child fostering as an alternative to their current vocation.”

For more information about parent and child fostering or any other fostering scheme, contact West Sussex County Council’s Fostering Recruitment Team on 0330 222 7775 or visit www.westsussex.gov.uk/fostering

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