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Children come into care due to a number of reasons. Sometimes, it is because of a parent’s short-term illness or a temporary issue within the family that requires the children have alternative care. Some have experienced domestic violence or witnessed drug and alcohol misuse; others have been abused or neglected.
Fostering is a way of providing children and young people with a caring and nurturing environment. This may often only be a temporary arrangement, and many fostered children return to their birth families once the areas that caused them to come into foster care have been resolved. Sometimes however, they may continue living with their foster family long term.
As of 31 March 2019*, there were over 60,000 looked-after children in England, an increase of 4% from 2018. Research indicates a further 8,000 foster families are required nationally over the coming year to ensure that children and young people have an appropriate foster home.
Some children are unfortunately unable to return to their birth family, so they may be adopted or placed with a foster family until they reach independence. Foster carers are trained, assessed and approved to look to look after a child in care by a fostering service. They are supported to provide the best possible care to any fostered child. Fostering is a rewarding journey that allows you to change and have a positive impact on a child or young person’s life.
Unfortunately, the number of children who need to be looked-after exceeds the levels that local authorities are able to support. Therefore, independent fostering providers are required to provide valuable support and facilities to children and young people nationally. Lotus works closely with local authorities to provide the best support and care for children and young people.