Victoria’s state government is making the fostering process easier in the hope that more families will open their homes to children in need by committing more funds to the Fostering Connections programme which promotes the benefits of foster care.
Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare CEO Deb Tsorbaris spoke of the necessity of the fostering programme pressures placed on the foster system as a result of the global pandemic.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has placed enormous pressure on many Victorian families who are suffering financial hardship and stress, so we are urging everyone to open their hearts and homes,” Ms Tsorbaris said.
“We know that children thrive when families have access to the support they need, and foster carers can play a key part in that support system.”
The government has committed $5.8 million over four years to continue the programme and promote the benefits of foster caring and make the recruitment process more accessible for families in the state.
Victoria’s Minister for Child Protection Luke Donnellan this week met Vince and Kym – who have been foster carers for more than 20 years. They have cared for more than 70 children and currently provide long-term placement for three teenage boys.
While there are challenges and ups-and-downs, Vince and Kym believe the experience of caring for a child is always worth it – and there is a lot of support when you get started.
The Labor Government has committed $5.8 million over four years to continue the Fostering Connections program to promote the benefits of foster caring and make the recruitment process more accessible for Victorians.
Run by the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare, Fostering Connections provides a centralised service that connects prospective carers with foster care agencies, helping Victorians find the right agency in their area.
Fostering Connections also provides accurate and detailed information about the process of becoming a foster carer and answers any questions people might have about fostering before they contact an agency.
At any given time, about 1,700 children are being looked after by foster carers or are waiting for a placement.
While the coronavirus pandemic has placed significant stress on many families across Victoria, it has also demonstrated the enormous goodwill of Victorians to support each other during hard times.