Extra fostering time welcomed in Somerset

Burnham and Highbridge Weekly News: Extra fostering time welcomed in Somerset Extra fostering time welcomed in Somerset

NEWS of a £40million fund to allow young people to remain in foster care until they are 21 has been welcomed by Somerset County Council.

Education Minister Edward Timpson, who announced the Government funding, said: “I know from the many foster children I grew up with how crucial it is for them to be given sufficient time to prepare for life after care.

“A growing number of local authorities already offer young people the choice to stay but, with little financial support it, can be challenging for their foster families.

“This is a further reform to our much wider package of support for care leavers, including much greater financial support for young people leaving care at 18.”

Cllr Frances Nicholson, cabinet member for children and families at Somerset County Council, said: “In Somerset, we already offer some young people the opportunity to stay with their foster carers after they turn 18 and we have been moving forward to make staying in foster care an option for all young people.

“Government’s announcement is fantastic news.

“The extra funding and the amendment to the Children and Families Bill to give all young people the right to stay in foster care until they are 21 will allow us to widen our existing scheme and strengthen our commitment to young people in care in Somerset.”

Cllr Nicholson added: “We have recognised for a long time that it is hugely beneficial for young people to remain in care when they are over 18 to help them develop as individuals and move on to live by themselves or into higher education.”

To find out more about fostering visit www.fosteringinsomerset.org.uk or telephone 0800 587 9900 for an information pack.

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