Fostering faces many challenges and one of the toughest at this moment in time is trying to ensure that siblings can be kept together. This vulnerable group really does face an uphill struggle as they are now also being overlooked for adoption. There are now literally hundreds of children who are not being considered for adoption as they have brothers and sisters. At the present time around a third of potential adoptive parents do not contemplate giving a home to siblings. The latest figures released by local authorities in England confirm that siblings continue to be the largest group of children still requiring families. These figures reveal that 890 siblings were among 2,030 children needing to be placed in settled homes by the end of last September. The children in this group include boys and girls over five years of age, children from minority ethnic backgrounds -as well as children with a disability. Fostering is the alternative and service providers are putting considerable effort into recruiting more carers.
Fostering places for siblings also in short supply.
Separating brothers and sisters is likely to have a powerful and adverse effect on their emotional wellbeing. Being apart severely disrupts their sense of identity and shared sense of history. Sarah Johal is a member of the National Adoption Recruitment steering group. She is also head of One Adoption West Yorkshire. She says “Their ability to lead a healthy, happy adult life may be impacted because they haven’t been adopted.” Because so many siblings are being overlooked for adoption, the pressure is mounting to identify more fostering placements. The situation in relation to adoption gives an indication of the scale of the problem: sibling groups have to wait considerably longer than only children to be adopted. Polling by Opinium reveals twenty-eight percent of respondents saying they would only be interested in adopting an only child. The result of this is that over half of sibling groups have to wait longer than eighteen months to b adopted. They can wait a third longer than single children which means they spend an additional four and a half months usually in foster care. Even this option can be difficult as fostering placements are in short supply. And this matters because if siblings can be kept together while they are waiting to be adopted, this can make adoption easier for parents. Dr. Elizabeth Kilbey, a clinical psychologist who is also involved in the new You Can Adopt campaign says:
“The brother and sister bond can offer incredible life-changing benefits throughout all aspects and stages of children’s lives. This is especially pertinent for adopted children, with our research showing the bond can support mental health, emotional wellbeing, social skills, and help children settle into a new family.”
Fostering with Rainbow.
Rainbow are seeking people interested in fostering. There has recently been a 3 percent rise in the number of children being placed in foster care. Sadly, every year there is a shortage of fostering homes. This year it stands at slightly over 8,000.
If you might be looking for a new career, fostering might suit you. It has much to offer: carers enjoy job flexibility – as well as the chance to work from home. Foster carers need to be highly committed to providing the best care and emotional support for vulnerable children. We support the ambitions of our foster carers by providing high-quality training and a wide choice of career opportunities. Rainbow has been rated ‘Outstanding in all areas’ by Ofsted – the guarantee of our commitment to you. And you can be confident that we will always do our best for you and your fostering family.
The children we are supporting are in London, Birmingham, Manchester – as well as parts of Hampshire. They are diverse and of all ages and backgrounds. We need fostering homes for teenagers, sibling groups, and children with complex needs. We also need to find foster homes for young mothers and their babies – parent and child fostering.
Contact us today.
You do not need special skills or qualifications to foster. But you will need to have a spare room. Call us on 0330 311 2845 to find out more about our fostering careers. If you like the sound of what is on offer, we can start the application process by contacting you over Skype right now. It’s very straightforward – one of our friendly recruitment advisors will give you all the help you need.
Our blog archive covers a great many fostering topics – and these are being added to all the time. To discover more about therapeutic foster care visit –
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Rainbow keeping the focus on fostering.