Nottinghamshire County Council: Foster carers to receive thank you payment for selfless efforts during pandemic

Foster carers to receive thank you payment for selfless efforts during pandemic

A one-off payment will be made to Nottinghamshire County Council foster carers as a thank you for their continued support for children in care throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

All permanent Nottinghamshire County Council fostering households who continued to look after children, or took in new foster placements over the last year, will each receive a one-off payment of approximately £300.

The payment is thanks to a fund of around £100,000 allocated by the County Council to say thank you for going “above and beyond to make sure young people had a loving home when they needed it during such difficult times” Explained Councillor Tracey Taylor, Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Children and Young People’s Committee:

“This thank you payment is very close to my heart. I don’t know how we can ever thank foster carers enough for what they do. I think this payment is a significant gesture, not financially as we can never pay foster carers their true worth, but this is a gesture of thanks at a time when foster carers have gone above and beyond anything that they ever do normally.”

Amy, a foster carer for four years with Nottinghamshire County Council, welcomes the announcement: “I think this is lovely news and it will be greatly received by all the foster carers, particularly because it’s a thank you payment to recognise the work foster carers have done and some of the difficulties we’ve faced over the past year. I think that it’s really humbling and nice to get this kind of gesture.

“It’s been so hard on everyone. When face-to-face meetings with our social workers had to stop and everything had to be done over video calls, I think a lot of foster carers felt very lonely and isolated – even though the support continued, it all going virtual made a huge difference to people because all of a sudden that personal contact was gone.”

Amy leads a support group for foster carers to keep in touch and share experiences and advice with each other. This group has been needed more than anyone could have imagined throughout the pandemic, and members are eager to meet up for the first time at a private picnic in the coming weeks.

Councillor Taylor will be sending letters to foster carers to inform them of the payment and to offer her personal thanks for everything they have done over the last year and for their commitment to the children in care.

Within this letter, Councillor Taylor addresses the foster carers directly:

“During the pandemic I know that you have gone above and beyond to keep the children in your care as safe and secure as they can be. The last 15 months have not been easy and that the pandemic will have impacted on your personal lives as well as your fostering responsibilities. I am incredibly grateful for everything that you have done and the sacrifices you have made.”

Nottinghamshire County Council continues to be in great need of more foster carers to look after local children. Anyone who feels inspired to enquire about fostering can find out more on the council’s website: www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/fostering, they can join a virtual information event (details on the website), or call 0115 804 4440 to chat to a member of the fostering team.

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