The Fostering Network welcomes Welsh Government consultation
The Fostering Network has welcomed the launch of a consultation by the Welsh Government into a new scheme that would help young people in foster care, in Wales, stay with their foster carers beyond the age of 18.
The proposed scheme, When I am Ready, aims to support young people leaving care and entering independent living. It recognises that not all those leaving care are ready to live on their own, especially if they have complex health, learning, or other needs.
Long term fostering provides stability for children and young people as they go through the care system. Leaving this behind on their 18th birthday can leave them anxious and unprepared. This scheme offers them a chance to have greater control over their futures beyond care.
Freda Lewis, director of the Fostering Network Wales, said: “The average age of leaving home is 24, and so why should someone in care who has already faced huge upheaval in their life face losing their support network, especially if they are still in education or training?
“Many foster carers want to support young people into adulthood but currently if they rely on their fostering allowance then they may not be able to keep them in their homes.
“This scheme would allow foster carers to continue their support until such time as the person in their care is able to successfully support themselves.”
The Fostering Network has long campaigned, throughout the UK, for young people to be able to stay with their foster carers after their eighteenth birthday.
You can respond to the consultation via the Welsh Government website. The Fostering Network will be responding to the consultation and will be in touch with members shortly.