At least 450 new foster families are needed across the north east during 2014 to provide stable, secure and loving homes for the record numbers of fostered children, according to figures from the Fostering Network.
Tonight, more than 3,250 children will be living with foster families across the north east. More foster families are needed not only to replace the 12 per cent who leave each year, but to ensure that children who come into foster care find foster carers who are right for them, have the skills and qualities they need, and are available now.
More foster families are particularly needed to provide homes for teenagers, children with disabilities and sibling groups.
Robert Tapsfield, chief executive of the Fostering Network, said: “Fostering services across the north east need to attract a diverse range of foster carers who can reflect the children in care and who can offer as much choice as possible so that they can find the right home for each child, first time.
“We urgently need people who believe that they have the right skills and qualities to foster to come forward and make a long lasting positive difference to the life of a child. In particular, foster carers are needed to provide homes for teenagers and children with disabilities, and to help sibling groups stay together.”
An additional 7,000 foster families are needed right across England, and 850 in Scotland.