Today the Fostering Network’s 2013 annual conference, Putting the Child at the Heart of Foster Care, will see foster carers, fostering service staff and other professionals come together to discuss what a truly child-centred care system would look like.
Delegates will be hearing from the children’s minister and son of foster carers, Edward Timpson MP, children’s rights director for England Dr Roger Morgan, Professor Pat Petrie from the Centre for Understanding Social Pedagogy, University of London and Robert Tapsfield, chief executive of the Fostering Network.
The conference will also look at new insights to improve foster carer recruitment, examine aspirations for children in care and children’s views of foster care, and explore the future of foster care.
Jackie Sanders, who leads on foster carer recruitment at the Fostering Network and is addressing the conference, said: “Today’s conference will be an opportunity to focus minds on the most important people in foster care – the children. Many of us recognise that foster care can feel so driven by targets, processes and procedures that it can be all too easy to lose sight of the child.
“We will be pleased to welcome the children’s minister to the stage today to address our delegates. He is acutely aware, from his family’s work as foster carers, what it takes to be a foster carer and what a positive contribution they can make to children in care, and he knows that for foster carers, the child is at the heart of all that they do.
“There will also be opportunities to explore the wider work of the Fostering Network, in particular, our ground-breaking Head, Heart, Hands programme, and we will be reflecting on the findings of the Care Inquiry and how we can put its recommendations into day-to-day practice.”
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