THE generous contribution of Bathurst’s team of foster carers will be acknowledged at a special awards ceremony next week.
The Veritas House event will feature the presentation of the Deb Elsley Memorial Award to a local carer who displays the values of compassion, innovation, inclusion, individualised care, cultural sensitivity, fairness and honesty, along with five 10-year and 20-year service awards.
The ceremony will be held next Tuesday, September 11 as part of local Foster Care Week celebrations.
Veritas House operations manager (permanency support) Joel Palmer said it was important to acknowledge the contribution of foster carers who provided a safe and supportive environment for children in out of home care.
“Our foster carers play a critical role in assisting children and young people in their care to grow and develop in a happy and healthy way and we are excited about the opportunity to honour and celebrate the contribution they make to our community,” Mr Palmer said.
“To have so many of our foster carers reach the milestone of 10 years as carers is also significant and demonstrates just how rewarding the role can be.”
However, Veritas House urgently needs more local carers and will hold an information session at their office at 106-108 Russell Street next Thursday, September 13 from 5.30pm.
“Children and young people are taken into care because they cannot safely remain with their families and through no fault of their own,” Mr Palmer said.
“We urgently need local families and individuals to put up their hand because these children and young people deserve to feel special and worthy and loved.”
A wide range of carers is needed including respite (which can be as little as one weekend a month); emergency; long term; extended family or kin; guardianship and adoptive parents.
To become an authorised foster carer, applicants must be over 18, an Australian citizen or permanent resident, in good health and meet probity requirements including a Working with Children Check.