Lisa and Martin
Lisa and Martin are experienced foster carers who fostered with an independent fostering agency for 2 years prior to joining Fostering People.
Lisa recalls “The agency offered very few and infrequent placements and the few that they did offer were wholly unsuitable and appeared to lack any evidence of matching. For example, we have numerous primary aged children as close neighbours and the agency repeatedly offered us teenage males convicted or awaiting trial for Child Sexual Exploitation offenses.
The agency was not part of the local authority regional consortium by which local authorities have contracts in place with fostering providers to make placements. In hindsight was can see this may explain the lack of placements we were offered and we have since learnt that the agency is the most expensive agency in the region and appear to market themselves as a last resort for children that cannot be placed elsewhere. Overall our impression was that the agency was disorganised and several staff were often on sick leave.
We decided to look elsewhere and after making a few online enquiries, Fostering People were the first to respond to us. We initially thought that the assessment would be transferable and were surprised to learn that we would have to undergo the process again, however we were not put off by this. The assessment was carried out by an independent social worker who was very thorough leaving no stone unturned, but when it came to the final panel there was little else for the panel to ask”.
The couple have been fostering with Fostering People for almost 2 years and in that time, they have been able to appreciate the difference between different fostering providers, as Lisa explains.
“The two agencies are very different, the old agency had a handful of employees multitasking in various roles, Fostering People appears to have the right balance of staff with the right people in the right roles and it works very well. Having been with the previous agency we did not expect to receive so many offers of placements so soon after panel and it wasn’t long before we were settled down with a permanent placement.
The previous agency were only able to provide a few infrequent respite placements which is not why we came in to fostering, we feel really valued as part of the Fostering People team, they regularly provide feedback and offer support, there are occasional treats like Xmas lunch and hampers, and we recently received a thank you card from our own social worker expressing his gratitude for the service we provide. These little things make the difference, but the main difference is that we genuinely believe Fostering People appreciate our contribution and are there for us when we need them. We are 100% satisfied with the service provided by Fostering People. Their staff are professional and friendly and we have good relationships with them all, they invest in regular training and have excellent support services, the overall impression is that Fostering People is a rare feel good organisation where everyone enjoys their work and pulls together.
If you are unhappy for any reason with your current agency and considering a transfer, then make the change you will not be disappointed. You will have to undergo another assessment but you will be glad that you did.
Speak to the agency and its carers, I am sure that you will hear only positive encouragement from all concerned, we truly have not had a negative experience with Fostering People, neither have we heard a bad word said against the agency”.
Why foster with us?
We care about our foster carers a lot and we understand how important it is to support them at all times. We are an Ofsted rated ‘Outstanding’ agency across all areas of our work.
We provide you with the following:
- An average fostering allowance of £416 per week per child depending on the age and needs
- Initial and continuing training and development opportunities
- Regular visits from a dedicated and experienced social worker
- Locally-based support groups
- 24 hour support; 7 days a week, 365 days a year
- Fun social activities
To find out more about fostering with Fostering People, give us a call on 0800 077 8159 or complete the enquiry form on the left.