Adoption Mid & West Wales have been working with Kate Cairns Associates to develop a new programme of webinars in response to Covid-19. The live webinars will delivered by Kate Cairns, who is an author, speaker and trainer with an international reputation for her work around attachment, trauma and resilience, particularly in relation to vulnerable children and young people. She has been a social worker for forty years, and a trainer for twenty years.
Webinar Course 1: ‘Covid-19, Toxic Stress and Community Resilience: Maintaining compassionate reason during social adversity’.
Date: Wednesday 24th June 2020
Time: 1.30 – 3.00pm
Where: Zoom online
Description: Toxic levels of stress can change the way we think, feel and behave until we have recovered from the Trauma. This can happen to anyone, and at times of significant social adversity such as pandemic or climate change it will happen to many. This webinar, delivered by Kate Cairns, and the e-learning which accompanies it, enables participants to reflect on the implications of trauma-informed practice under such conditions. Trauma-informed practice has increasingly been recognised as important as our understanding of the current research evidence grows. And at a time when the whole population is living with issues of toxic stress and severe anxiety trauma-informed practice becomes essential for everyone.
Webinar Course 2: ‘Community Resilience and Secondary Trauma’.
Date: Wednesday 8th July 2020
Time: 1.30 – 3.00pm
Where: Zoom online
Description: Trauma is catching! Anyone who works with traumatised people may find at some point that they are affected by secondary trauma, developing similar signs and indicators of trauma to the people they are with. Secondary trauma is particularly likely in situations where the whole population is facing major stress. This course enables learners to understand key issues about the impact of secondary trauma on individuals, organisations and support networks, and then identify and develop skills in recognition, prevention and management of those effects.
If you are interested in attending any of the webinars please register by clicking on the link below.
You’ve been staying home to stay safe over the last few weeks. People who can help to make a difference to your life want to listen to how you have felt about having to do this because of the Coronavirus and any effect it has had on you.
This survey has been written by these organisations with help from children and young people:
- Welsh Government
- Children’s Commissioner for Wales
- Children in Wales
- Youth Parliament for Wales / Senedd Ieuenctid Cymru
The survey closes on 27th May so please complete it as soon as you can.
1. Talk to us
Pick up the phone and speak to a member of our friendly fostering team on 01437 774650. Find out how we can help you start your fostering journey. We will be happy to answer any questions and outline the fostering process.
2. Meet with us
If you decide to take the next step, we will visit you at home to find out more about you and members of your household. This is an opportunity for you all to ask any questions and for us to see your home and the space you have available. Together we will discuss which type of fostering is right for you and whether it is the right time to get started.
3. Your application
After meeting with us we will invite you to fill out an application. You will need to supply a number of references and undertake several checks, including employment references, background checks and medical reports.
4. Your training & assessment
To help you prepare to become a foster carer you will attend a fostering preparation course to hear about the skills required for fostering and meet some of our foster carers. During the assessment you will talk about your life, early years, current family situation and experiences that could affect the way you would care for a child. During this time you will consider the age of children and type of fostering placements you would like to offer. These visits and discussions will be the basis of a fostering assessment report about you and your family. Your fostering social worker will guide you through this part of the process and share the report with you.
5. Your approval
You will be invited to attend a fostering panel with your fostering social worker where your report will be presented. The panel is a group of people who have experience and knowledge about fostering. They will discuss your report and you may be asked questions. The panel will recommend whether you are ready to be approved. Following approval you will receive ongoing training and support from your supervising social worker and will become part of our growing fostering community.
One of the National Fostering Framework’s (NFF) work-streams has been the development of the Learning and Development Framework for Foster Carers. The Fostering Network and AFA Cymru led on the development of a Learning and Development Framework. There was extensive consultation with foster carers and staff across Wales which made a significant contribution to the development of this work. The purpose of the Learning and development framework is to offer a consistently high standard of post approval training to all local authority foster carers across Wales.
Currently there are variations in local practices in learning and development between local authorities; in Mid and West Wales we are proud to have been offering a high standard for many years.
The national fostering framework vision Learning and Development statement says “Fostering Families in Wales are offered great learning opportunities that meet their professional and personal needs, reflects their growing experience and supports them to provide high quality care for children and young people”
- Principle 1 – The NFF post approval learning and development framework forms part of the professional development pathway for foster carers in Wales, who are recognised as part of the social care work-force in Wales”
- Principle 2 – “Post approval learning and development provides foster carers and their families with opportunities to benefit from shared learning experiences, alongside professionals as part of the team around the child”
- Principle 3 – “Post approval training has consistent quality and content. Foster Carers own the responsibility for their motivation to develop and achieve personal learning goals”
Carmarthenshire Fostering Service are very proud to have presented our Local Authority Foster Carers, Vicky and Chris Jones and Deborah Jones with certificates for the completion of the Induction Framework. Despite being very busy with caring for their families and really embracing fostering for Carmarthenshire, Vicky, Chris and Deborah have embraced Learning and Development opportunities to support their strengths and confidence in caring for children and young people.
The Induction Framework programme facilitated by Social Worker Ms Janet Freimanis is one of the first in Wales and recognises the need to support our foster carers throughout their journey with ongoing Learning and Development opportunities.
They were presented with their certificates by Carmarthenshire Fostering Panel’s Independent Chairperson Mr David McGregor at their first year Panel review in recognition of the wonderful support they have provided to some of our most vulnerable children. Carmarthenshire Fostering Service are very lucky to have them on board and we look forward to working with Vicky, Chris and Deborah for many more years to come.
Cal the Fostering Bear took on the challenge of running the annual mascot race at Parc y Scarlets, Llanelli, during halftime at the Scarlets v Ospreys match on Boxing Day.
Cal ran the length of the rugby pitch, Cal didn’t win the race but he gave a brilliant performance in front of a large crowd of rugby supporters. Well Done Cal!
Jack* is a 12 year-old boy who is sociable and affectionate with a great sense of humour. Those who know Jack well describe him as loving, determined, kind, funny and energetic. He enjoys music (especially Elvis!), cartoons, swimming and he loves playing outdoors; and his favourite place to visit is Folly Farm. He loves sensory play and enjoys getting messy with paints and sand.
Jack has a diagnosis of Global Developmental Delay, asthma and has limited speech but is encouraged to be independent and will often communicate his needs and wants. Jack requires adult supervision at all times as he has very little awareness of danger and can be very busy.
Jack responds very well to good routines and he sleeps all through the night. He does needs support and encouragement with his personal care as he finds these tasks quite upsetting.
Jack attends a specialist unit for children and has the support of a one-to-one teaching assistant. He is very sociable with other children, especially younger children, enjoys school and seeing his friends.
Jack has been through an extremely difficult year for such a young boy, however in the last 6 months in a calm and loving environment he is starting to thrive; he’s able to concentrate better in class, made new friends and in general made amazing progress.
Would you be able to give Jack a home? We are looking for a long-term foster placement for Jack where there two carers who are able to give him the high level of supervision, support and love he needs. Jack needs a calm and quiet environment but one which can provide him with adequate stimulation and positive social interactions. His foster carers will need to be patient, warm, responsive and reliable.
Foster carers have a real chance to make a positive difference to the lives of children. They receive on-going training, 24-hour support and financial allowances.
If you think you have the love, skills, time and commitment to become Jack’s foster carers, please contact our Fostering Recruitment Team for an informal chat and to answer any questions on 0800 0933 699 or email email@example.com
To find out more about fostering in general please get in touch or visit our website foster.midandwest.wales/carmarthenshire
*Please note images and names do not relate to the foster child’s profiles and have been changed to protect identities.
On Thursday 14th November, as part of Skills to Foster (4 day initial training course delivered by the Fostering Team for “would be foster carers”), the Fostering Team launched the Post Approval Learning and Development Framework for Foster Carers. This plan is one of the National Fostering Frame work’s (NFF) work streams. Its aim is to provide a basis for a national approach to underpin a more consistent delivery to learning and development for foster carers across Wales. It is a pilot scheme which new recruits will be part of, the longer term plan is to deliver to all foster carers.
In the pictures are the applicants, foster carer mentors and some of the fostering team. All the applicants on the course have given a commitment to progressing their applications onto the assessment stage which is a brilliant outcome.
Ceredigion urgently need more Foster cares, the demand for foster placements outweighs our current resources. If you know anyone who would be interested in becoming a Foster carer please encourage them to phone the contact centre 01574 574000.
We also have information leaflets available (free of charge!!) you can pass onto interested family and friends. These can be requested from Ceredigion Fostering Team, tel no 01545 574000.
The children enjoyed making pizzas and cupcakes and spent time socialising with other children whose parents foster for the local authority. The sons and daughters group meet regularly throughout the year to discuss topics relevant to their role as children of foster carers.
The purpose of the sons and daughters of foster carers group is to show the children that they are valued for the role they play in their families who foster.