Kids Need Validation. There’s No Better Feeling Than Providing It

Kids Need Validation

Yesterday, I visited my sister in the East Midlands, and her huge brood of kids. There was my nephew and niece, both teenagers, who have ‘fostered’ all of their lives. Two step children who came along with my brother in law weren’t home this time, but three younger kids, who have been fostered for almost… Read more »

We Can Achieve Happy, Ethnically-Matched Adoptions. But It’ll Cost Us

We Can Achieve Happy, Ethnically-Matched Adoptions.

As reported last week in Community Care, the government says that adopting more children from care will save £310m.\r\n\r\nWhat’s new? Back in 2012, when working within a London local authority as recruitment and marketing manager for fostering and adoption, I always knew that the forcible, unilateral push for increased adoptions of children in care, by… Read more »

What does the election result mean for foster care?

Foster Care in UK after Brexit Result

This week delivered a general election result that almost none of us thought possible. Not the pollsters. Nor the politicians. Not even us ‘hard working people’ from ‘up and down this country’ that mustered any enthusiasm to discuss the election. Perhaps my observation was like yours—universal apathy.\r\n\r\nThe news of a Conservative majority government is now… Read more »

When in Roma

As a follow up to my recent post, I have just come across this version of the same set of circumstances, as published on the Christian Today website:\r\n\r\nA High Court judge has upheld the adoption of Catholic Roma children by a gay couple despite strong protests by their parents. Four of the unnamed Slovak Roma… Read more »

Stop pinching other agencies’ foster carers

Stop Pinching other Agencies Foster Carers

This week I had the pleasure of training colleagues from across the independent fostering sector. Held in Battersea, southwest London, this was the first of four one-day sessions. I was deeply impressed by the commitment, professional analysis and creative ideas which were shared during our course. These contributed much to an enthusiastic and meaningful discussion.\r\n\r\nMy… Read more »

The ‘right’ to sex-selective abortion

I rarely debate against personal freedoms, but here’s an article, in The Guardian, which is pushing me in that direction. It argues that a woman should be free to terminate a pregnancy if it doesn’t match her preference for either a girl or a boy.\r\n\r\nIt’s one of those arguments that seek to present all sides… Read more »

Stop molly-coddling kids in care. We don’t need it

Treat Foster Children Equally

Reading an article in The Voice (18 August 2015), I agree somewhat with the notion of apprenticeships being reserved for care leavers, because without natural parental support and nepotism (think family firms), young people can be disadvantaged.\r\n\r\nBut, as a care experienced adult myself, my personal experience does not match Barnardo’s chief executive Javed Khan’s comment:… Read more »

Social workers need not leave local authorities

Social Workers Need Not Leave Local Authorities

As an adult care leaver, once firmly of the view that the only place for children’s services was in state hands, my experience in recent years has turned that presumption on its’ head.\r\n\r\nCuts in Government funding to local authorities as they undergo conversion from providers to commissioners of public services have created plummeting morale, desperation,… Read more »

Slovak parents fail to block adoption by gay couple

Slovak Parents Fail to Block Adoption by Gay Couple

Two Slovakian parents have failed to block the adoption of two of their sons by a same sex couple in Kent, according to BBC News.\r\n\r\nThe Catholic couple, of Roma origin, argued their two young children would grow up alienated from their family and community. Taking the case to the High Court, they accused the local… Read more »

Rolf Harris guilty of indecent assaults

Rolf Harris Guilty of indecent assaults

So this week the veteran entertainer Rolf Harris was found guilty of 12 counts of indecently assaulting four girls in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.\r\n\r\nOne of the victims was a childhood friend of his daughter, another was an autograph hunter aged seven or eight. Prosecutors said Harris was a ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ character who took… Read more »

Social workers need not leave local authorities

Professional Fostering Requires Deep Personal Insight

Some of you will know that I am ‘care experienced’, having grown up in children’s homes and foster homes in the eighties in Nottinghamshire. I certainly feel my life experience brings benefits to my work, but I also recognise that it is far from unique. There are currently around 70,000 children in care and I… Read more »

Major study reveals true scale of abuse of children in care

Major Study Reveals True Scale of Abuse of Children in Care

Hot on the heels of the missing child abuse files which possibly incriminate senior Government figures from recent decades and with today’s Government falling over itself to ‘reassure’ the public that it will launch an ‘inquiry’ into the scandal, in today’s Independent, we now learn that:\r\n\r\nOne in every hundred children living in care is abused… Read more »

I say no to transracial adoption

A few years ago, when I started helping local authorities to recruit foster carers, I was surprised to see how many applicants were of black African or black Caribbean origin in comparison to the racial composition of the local population.\r\n\r\nAn attraction campaign I produced for a southwest London borough provides a stark example of this…. Read more »

How to recruit more adopters and foster carers.

How to Recruit More Adopters and Foster Carers

The Guardian recently published a piece about fostering and adoption recruitment, submitted by iMPOWER, a management consulting firm which supports public services. It captured my interest because I have worked with and within local authorities to help them to recruit foster carers and support their family finding activity, and with a marketing career of almost… Read more »

How To (Really) Recruit Foster Carers™

How to Really Recruit Fosters Carers

The Guardian some time ago published a piece about fostering recruitment submitted by a management consulting firm. It captured my attention because for several years I have worked with local authorities and independent fostering agencies to help them to recruit foster carers.\r\n\r\nThe article highlights that the successful attraction and recruitment (and retention, in my view)… Read more »

Easter loneliness

Easter Loneliness

Before I was rescued by a social worker and taken into care in 1986, I remember dreading Easter.\r\n\r\nFirstly, it meant I’d go hungry for four days, due to no free school dinners and my parents’ wilful neglect.\r\n\r\nSecondly, I was never given an Easter egg, and would feel isolated, unloved and envious as I imagined my… Read more »

Daniel Pelka: Serious case review finds ‘missed opportunities’

Daniel Pelka: Serious case review finds missed opportunities

It doesn’t take much analysis to point a finger in the direction of blame on this. So let’s not be shy about where the collective culpability for Daniel’s tortuous, agonising, death lies. Of course it begins with the parents. They killed him. They are disgusting monsters who have been tried, convicted, and are now locked… Read more »

But for the kindness of strangers

But for the kindness of strangers

One of the most dominant aspects of my life as a neglected and abused little boy was the relentlessly gnawing hunger that I carried inside of me everywhere I went.\r\n\r\nMy father and stepmother locked me in a small bedroom at almost all times, except to go to school, where I’d feel a hopeful stab of… Read more »

Are you interested in fostering or adoption?

Are You Interested Fostering Adoption

My name is Sean Ferrer. I am a marketing strategist, and I work closely with fostering and adoption agencies to help them reconfigure their carer recruitment strategies in order to find loving families for kids in care.\r\n\r\nIt’s not easy (but is bringing up kids anyway?)—but it’s massively worthwhile! Having grown up in children’s homes and… Read more »