Andover couple, Lee Brown and Karen Hamilton are doing their bit to help tackle the shortage of 10,000 foster carers in the UK. Lee was looking for a new challenge and a more fulfilling career when he had the idea of becoming a foster carer. Since becoming a foster carer for Romsey-based foster agency Blue Sky Fostering in 2008 Lee has been fostering a local teenager and encourages others to do the same.
Lee enthuses "We have always had a passion for people in our community and the well-being of others so it was in our nature to try to help in this way. When I saw an advert in the local press for Blue Sky Fostering I didn't hesitate to take that first step and make the call to them. I am so pleased I made the decision to become a foster carer and feel privileged to be given the opportunity to make a difference.
I now have a fulfilling career and feel that I am making such a big difference to a young person's life who has had difficulties. We are able to offer him stability and some normality in his life. There have been many challenges but I have found that determination and patience goes a long way in making a success of being a foster carer which has become such a rewarding part of our lives. I couldn't do it without my wife Karen who is a great support. It's really important that you have a good support network around you who understand that you may need to call on them for help from time to time."
Blue Sky Fostering are currently looking for more foster carers in North Hampshire. Rupert Bolger, from the Blue Sky team explains. "Anyone can become a foster carer from all backgrounds whether they are married, single or living with a partner. The young people are at the centre for everything we do so each potential foster carer must have a spare bedroom, patience, optimism and want to make a difference to a young person's life by providing a safe and caring environment in their home."
In return for making this commitment to young people in North Hampshire, Blue Sky foster carers receive a weekly allowance, ongoing training and support through one-to-one meetings, gatherings with other foster carers and 14 days paid holiday.
If you have considered fostering a child and you would like to make a difference to a young person's life in North Hampshire, contact Blue Sky Fostering to find out if a career in fostering is for you. Blue Sky Fostering can be contacted on 01794 590003 or through http://www.blueskyfostering.com/
About Blue Sky Fostering
Blue Sky Fostering was established in 2005 to address the need for more foster carers in the south of England. Since then we have built a reputation for excellence providing extensive training and support throughout the challenges of being a professional foster carer. Working together with our foster carers we believe we can help every child reach their full potential regardless of their previous life experiences.
Based in Romsey, Hampshire, but operating across the south of England, Blue Sky supports over 70 foster carers, caring for around 80 children across the region. In 2008, Blue Sky was deemed an 'outstanding' fostering provider following an inspection by Ofsted.
About Foster Care
Across England there are an estimated 60,000 children in the care system. Over 42,000 of these children and young people are in foster care. The majority are aged between 10 and 15. The need for foster carers is increasing each year with a shortfall of around 10,000 foster carers nationwide.
For more information about Blue Sky Fostering and the work we do please contact Katrina McDuff on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01794 590003