WORCESTERSHIRE County Council is appealing for experienced foster carers to join an intensive support specialist fostering scheme providing tailored fostering placements to older children.

Called Placement Plus, it provides specialist support and tailored fostering placements for children aged 10 and over with more complex needs who are at risk of going into a children’s home or need to step down from one. It allows young people to remain in a family setting with additional support.

Foster carers will receive regular supervision from their social worker as well as support from a family support worker and a clinical psychologist. They will have received additional training and will be part of a Team around the Child (TAC), which provides an enhanced level of support for these young people to ensure a successful placement.

The foster carer is a key member of the TAC and will play a crucial role in planning and maintaining placements. All placements are made in a planned manner with introductions prior to a placement being made.

There are monthly TAC meetings as well as monthly meetings with other Placement Plus carers. The Worcestershire County Council Fostering Service offers a high standard and wide ranging training programme. There will also be planned, regular respite care where appropriate.

Lorraine Lockyer, a regular foster carer for Worcestershire Fostering said: "We are very happy with the professionalism and support of all the staff we have encountered at Placement Plus, ISL (Integrated Service for Looked after Children) and the Worcestershire Fostering Service admin. If people are thinking about fostering, I would have no hesitation in recommending that they join Placement Plus.

"We have completed 11 trainings so far. I am part way through the Nurturing Attachments Group which is a brilliant 18-week course. It is informal, interactive and fun as well as being highly informative. I am booked on to four more courses this spring. All our training needs are being met, and more besides".

Barbara Carter, group manager of Fostering and Kinship at Worcestershire County Council, added:

"Our priority when organising fostering placements is making the right match for all involved so that the placement is successful and beneficial for all. This is an opportunity to offer the next generation a positive experience of family life and support them to become confident adults."

Cabinet Member with responsibility for Children and Families Councillor Andy Roberts said: "Foster carers make a unique contribution to society and can change the lives of those they care for. Finding more people to become foster carers means that more children and young people can grow up in happy, secure homes, while also giving them a positive experience of family life.”

Further rewards also include of an enhanced fee payment (£600 plus age allowance) per week, along with four weeks planned respite a year.

If you are an experienced foster carer or have worked or work with children and are looking to expand your skills this scheme could be for you – an attachment based approach to fostering children aged 10+ with more complex needs.

For more information, please visit: http://www.worcestershirefostering.co.uk/already-fostering/placement-plus/, email fostering@worcestershire.gov.uk, call Freephone 0800 028 2158 or connect through https://www.facebook.com/fosteringworcestershire/