Fostering children can give you the chance to make a difference to the lives of young people, to change the world of someone less fortunate, and to give a good start in life to a person or persons that matter.
Shropshire Fostering – the fostering service at Shropshire Council – has made a commitment to support children in the local area by helping foster parents support them and give them what they need to be comfortable.
"Fostering is about caring for children and young people in your home; it is also about working as a part of a wider team providing nurture, positive support and care for children who cannot, for whatever reason, live with their birth family at this time," said a spokesperson.
"This means that Shropshire foster carers are often caring for vulnerable children who are likely to be finding the changes in their life quite worrying, and so need extra support.
"We know that our foster carers do what they do for the children and young people – but they do have to be pragmatic as they have bills to pay too. Being a foster carer takes time, commitment and a lot of energy, so we make sure that they are recompensed for the incredible work they do.
"Our Payment for Skills fees levels 1, 2 and 3 are payable to you for 52 weeks per year (subject to certain conditions being met) and not just when a child is placed in your care.
"The fees and allowances we pay will depend on the level of skill required to care for a particular child, as well as reflect their age, so it’s important to compare like with like.
"For example, a Skill Level 2 Foster Carer with one child aged 0-4 will receive a monthly payment of £1076.36. A Skill Level 3 Foster Carer with two children aged 11-15 will receive a monthly payment of £2640.40. There is also a fourth level called Care Plus for the most skilled and experienced foster carers which remunerates even higher.
"We want to be totally transparent in our payment structure and really reward the effort foster carers put into changing children's lives. As such, on top of our fees, we also make separate payments for birthdays, holidays and some other costs.
"Become a foster carer for Shropshire and you will also have the satisfaction of knowing that you will be meeting the needs of a local child, as well as having your training delivered locally and being part of a local support network.
"Another important factor that helps to make the overall package attractive is that foster carers receive a number of tax exemptions from the Government, leading to many paying little or no tax on their fostering earnings."
Potentially, anyone over the age of 21 can foster providing they are able to give a child a secure and caring home.
For more general information on fostering in Shropshire, visit www.shropshirefostering.co.uk or call 0800 783 8798.