Foster Care Week 2018 runs from September 9 to 16 across Australia and honours the extraordinary work of foster carers in our community who bring love, stability and hope to the lives of children and young people in care.
There is a desperate shortage of foster carers across the country, with over 40,000 children in the out-of-home care system nationwide, the majority of whom have been in care for two years or more,
Foster Care Week shines a crucial light on the urgent need for more people in the community to open their homes to children and young people in need.
Foster carers are needed for all types of care, from emergency, respite and short term carers able to support restoration of children to their birth parents, to carers wishing to give them a permanent family through guardianship or open adoption.
Agencies will be hosting events in each state around country, from morning teas and picnic lunches to special outings and family fun days, to demonstrate their deep thanks and appreciation to their foster carers for the valuable work they do every day.
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In NSW, for example, Foster Care Week 2018 is co-ordinated by the Association of Children’s Welfare Agencies (ACWA), the peak body for out-of-home care agencies in the state.
ACWA CEO Andrew McCallum says foster carers are the child protection system’s greatest asset.
“NSW is lucky to have exceptional people like this in our community who are dedicated to making a difference to children and young people who, for various reasons, are unable to live with their own families,” Mr McCallum said.
“ACWA and our member agencies are very proud to recognise and celebrate their tireless efforts and tremendous work they do.
“While it can be demanding at times, we know the rewards are worth it.”
Adopt Change is a national not for profit organisation with a focus on advocating for safety, nurture and permanency for all children.
To find out more about foster care services available in states across Australia, and links to Foster Care Week activities, visit www.adoptchange.org.au.