The number of children living in care in Kirklees has gone up by 20% in the last five years.
And Kirklees Council has launched a new appeal to provide long-term homes for 85 youngsters looking for new families.
It is brothers and sisters and older children who are most in need of new homes, according to Kirklees Council.
Lucy Earnshaw, deputy manager for Kirklees Council’s long-term fostering team, said: “Despite the success of recent campaigns, which have yielded more foster carers than ever, recruiting enough long-term foster carers remains a key issue.
“This is a concern nationally and is due largely to year-on-year increases in the number of children coming into the care system. In the past five years, we’ve seen an increase of new care cases in Kirklees of around 20%.
“Although most go back to live with their birth families or are adopted, around one fifth of all children currently in our care will need to be fostered until they reach adulthood.
“The sad reality is that in many cases, the older the child, the more difficult it is to find them a permanent home.
“For sibling groups and children with physical, learning or behavioural issues, their chances are further diminished.”
Foster carers receive regular support and opportunities for training and development to give them the skills necessary to support children and young people through difficult times.
Lucy adds: “Although in some respects long-term fostering can present more of a challenge, most of our carers say that it is the most rewarding, worthwhile job they’ve ever done and we provide ongoing training and support for all our foster carers.
“It requires a very special person and we need families who are resilient, flexible and won’t give up on a child at the first hurdle.
“In making a commitment to see them through a difficult time in their lives, you are also laying firm foundations; the benefits of which can be seen throughout adulthood.”
For more information got to www.kirklees.gov.uk/fostering . You can also speak to someone from Kirklees’ fostering team on: 0800 389 0086.
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