National fostering organisation encourages Brighton’s LGBT community to explore foster care roles as part of LGBT Adoption and Fostering awareness week
As part of LGBT Adoption and Fostering Week 2019, national social enterprise, Five Rivers Child Care, is calling on Brighton’s LGBT community to explore career opportunities in fostering as new research highlights stark misconceptions surrounding fostering across the community.
There are currently 920* children and young people needing foster homes across the South East of England yet there are common misconceptions around who is eligible to foster, from age through to living circumstances and sexual orientation.
59% of people across Brighton are unaware that same sex couples or those from the LGBT community are eligible to foster. A misconception Five Rivers Child Care is keen to eliminate this week, which marks LGBT Adoption and Fostering awareness week, in a bid to recruit more foster carers from currently underrepresented communities.
In addition to serious misconceptions surrounding LGBT rights to foster, a further 60 percent of people across the UK believe that those in rented accommodation are unable to foster, and 40 percent of us believe that those without their own children wouldn’t be allowed to be foster carers.
Commenting on the findings, Martin Leitch, Head of Fostering Operations at Five Rivers Child Care, said: “The findings from our recent research paint a massively outdated picture of the fostering industry but it highlights that more needs to be done to reach those within LGBT communities to tell them about the career opportunities available to them in fostering. And its not just a career, it’s a life choice. Its deciding to change the life of a vulnerable young person that otherwise might not have a home or a family. It’s extremely important to have a diverse range of foster carers across the country to reflect the diverse nature of the children and young people entering the system and provide role models from all walks of life. We already have some fantastic carers from the LGBT community who are enriching children’s and young people’s lives on a daily basis.
“We want to make it common knowledge that anyone can foster, providing they have a spare room and they are over the age of 21. A foster carer is not determined by whether they own a house, or whether they’re married or have children. Single people, those in rented accommodation, those with disabilities and those from the LGBTQ community all have the opportunity to make great foster carers.”