Fostering plea

The number of foster carers in the Exeter area has reached critically low levels. There is currently a shortage of more than 8,200 in England and a shortfall of 600 in the south west alone.

As a south west-based fostering agency, we are appealing to readers of the Exmouth Journal to join our Love to Make a Difference drive to help spread the plea for more fosterers to their family, friends and wider networks.

It is a common misconception that foster carers must have previous experience or come from a caring background; in fact, our carers come from a diverse range of backgrounds.

We welcome applications from single people, divorced people, lone parents and unmarried couples, as long as they can provide a safe environment for a child in need.

With recent figures from the charity Age UK revealing that a total of 170,000 job-seekers over 50 nationally have been out of work for more than a year, we are making a particular plea to those facing redundancy or unemployment in later life to consider fostering as a viable career option.

In light of the Government cutbacks, fostering can not only offer personal rewards, but also an attractive tax-free allowance.

For more information about fostering with Pathway Care visit www.pathwaycare.com or call 0871 226 3760.

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Martin Leitch

Regional Director for the South West

Pathway Care.