Aberdeenshire foster carers praised for rising to the challenges of Covid lockdowns

Foster carers in Aberdeenshire rose to the challenges of home schooling and keeping children safe during the Covid-19 lockdowns.

By Kevin McRoberts
Thursday, 14th October 2021, 6:58 am
Foster carers adapted to support and care for children during lockdown, including helping with home schooling.
Foster carers adapted to support and care for children during lockdown, including helping with home schooling.

Statements from foster carers in an annual report from Aberdeenshire Council’s foster care service highlighted the highs and lows of foster caring during a global pandemic.

One statement said: “Fostering in 2020 has been amazing, it’s brought a focus for me and my own children during the pandemic and we’ve loved having our young boy stay with us.

"The support from Aberdeenshire Council has been great. Everybody I’ve worked with has made such a great effort towards the child in our care, myself and my family. Honestly forever grateful for the experience.”

The service adapted to the changes to the working environment caused by the pandemic by highlighting free online training resources and providers. The fostering social workers also provided support and supervision virtually through telephone and online meetings, and physically distanced face-to-face contact when restrictions allowed.

During lockdown, the service encouraged fostering families to take part in a variety of activities online which included themed window displays and craft activities.

Councillor Gillian Owen, Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee chair, said: “It is hard not to be moved by the warmth shown by foster carers during what has been an incredibly difficult time for everyone.

"I am immensely proud of the Foster Care service for quickly adapting to the ever-changing working world in order to keep in touch with foster care families. That they also ensured anyone interested in becoming a foster carer can undertake the training to do so in the midst of a global pandemic is also hugely impressive.”

Councillor Rosemary Bruce, committee vice-chair, added: “Whilst foster care isn’t for the faint hearted, it is hugely rewarding. It gives you the opportunity to make a difference to the lives of children and young people in Aberdeenshire.”

If you are interested in becoming a foster carer or would like an information pack, go to [email protected] or call 01467 532700.