Could you help most vulnerable children?

Councillor Richard Roberts.
Councillor Richard Roberts.

More foster carers are needed to look after our most vulnerable children, says the man responsible for children’s services at Herts County Council.

As part of a nationwide campaign to promote foster care, information stalls and activities will be taking place across the county.

But Councillor Richard Roberts, who represents the Kings Langley ward as well as holding the children’s services portfolio at County Hall, is also launching a new project to recruit 80 more fosterers in the county over the next year alone.

He said: “Children do not come into care lightly, it is really serious, so we want to give them the best chance to stay with a caring, loving family.

“We think the best way of giving children this opportunity to thrive will be with local families who can take in a troubled child and give them a new start.”

There are only 79 foster carers in Dacorum at the moment, with a total of 143 children in care in the borough.

Across the county, there are more than 1,000 children in care, but even if the planned recruitment drive is successful, the number of fosterers would still only be half that amount.

Councillor Roberts said: “We are using all the resources we can get our hands on to think of the best ways to recruit foster carers, and also to support them, give them the right training, reduce the amount of bureaucracy and speed up the whole process as much as we possibly can. I am very optimistic.

“I am also proud of the fact that we doubled the number of children adopted in the county from 33 to nearly 80 in the last year. The idea of how we can support children always comes back to care. That is what the whole process is about.”

Foster carers must have at least one spare bedroom in their home. To find out more, call 0800 917 0925 or visit www.hertsdirect.org/fostering.